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Aston sets wheels in motion on exciting KTP project

WheelRight update

WheelRight Ltd have recently entered into a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with Aston University.

Aston University and WheelRight Ltd will be collaborating for a second time on an exciting two year Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP), worth £166,000.  The project will involve WheelRight utilising Aston’s expertise in advanced machine learning techniques so that they can advance their ambition of making the process of tyre inspection automatic, accurate and easy to use across the world.

WheelRight Ltd currently provide a device which, when driven over by a vehicle with pneumatically inflated tyres, calculates the pressure in all of the vehicles tyres, measures the vehicle’s weight and load distribution, and automatically measures tread depth. This project aims to enhance this device by implementing machine vision techniques and by creating a data warehouse.

The project will build on the work that WheelRight have already completed with Aston University’s Computer Science Group on the development of the current tyre pressure product.  Aston were able to improve the performance of the algorithm currently being used in the device, particularly for commercial vehicles, by applying Aston’s expertise in state-of-the-art visualisation techniques and automatic relevance determination.

This KTP project will allow WheelRight to improve the accuracy and consistency of their product further resulting in damaged tyres being more accurately identified, which will ultimately have a significant impact on improving road safety for drivers. The current system is able to send notifications to drivers about their tyre pressure so that when it falls below the appropriate level they know to re-inflate their tyres, helping prevent faults, breakdowns and potential accidents. This project will improve the certainty of this system leading to more accurate notifications, and in combination with the data warehouse created has the potential to improve the long term performance of tyres and positively influence car development in the future.

WheelRight have decided to work with Aston University’s Computer Science group due to the challenging nature of this project in the areas of machine vision and big data analysis.  The group’s specialist mathematical skills, particularly in machine learning and probabilistic pattern recognition, will be essential to developing new algorithms and mining large quantities of data.

This project will allow WheelRight to add further functionality to the existing product line. Aston University's expertise will be significant in helping us meet these goals"

Lead Academic Professor Ian Nabney, who is leading the academic part of the project, commented that “We are delighted to be collaborating with WheelRight again especially on such an academically challenging project which provides an opportunity for the testing and transfer of theoretical knowledge in to real life processes”

John Catling, Chief Executive at WheelRight, states that “This project will allow WheelRight to add further functionality to the existing product line.  Aston University’s expertise will be significant in helping us to meet these goals”

To find out more about how your business can benefit from working with Aston University, please email rke@aston.ac.uk or call 0121 204 4242.