CTAG is a Spanish, private, non-profit R&D technology centre devoted to support the automotive industry in its research, development and innovation needs. CTAG was created in 2002 thanks to a joint initiative of automotive enterprises within the region.
Its mission is to contribute to the improvement of automotive companies’ competitiveness, offering its support to the sector’s industries on their modernization and adaptation to new technologies. In fact, aprox. 90% of CTAG’s revenues are derived from contracts with industry, coming the rest from publicly financed research and innovation projects granted under competitive calls at regional, national and European level.
CTAG works at different stages of the development of new products and processes, from applied research to product life validation. The key fields of competence where CTAG concentrates its activities are: new materials and processes, Industry 4.0, virtual simulation, component testing and analysis of performances, environment, electronics, ergonomics, comfort and innovation management.
With a team of more than 800 professionals, CTAG offers comprehensive solutions for the development of innovations and large industrial projects. It integrates the design of body-in-white, cabin and components, as well as modifications on vehicles. It also approaches the definition, implementation and development of new industrial processes. It contributes to the digital transformation of the industry through machine vision, cobotics, Big Data and other key technologies in the Factory 4.0.
In addition, CTAG has modern facilities equipped with the latest technologies and highly qualified human resources to carry out complete component and system validation with the ultimate testing equipment: climatic, vibration & acoustics, fatigue, materials, engine, electronics, batteries and ergonomics lab. These labs are certified by UNE EN ISO 9001, UNE EN ISO 14001, UNE EN ISO/IEC 17025, Euro NCAP and specific automotive OEMs’ certification (e.g. Assurex-PSA, Self-Renault, VW, among others).
Fig. 3. CTAG’s headquarters in O Porriño (Spain)
The strategic research fields of CTAG are Industry 4.0, new materials, autonomous driving, comfort, connected vehicle and vehicle electrification. Within these fields, CTAG have participated in more the 250 collaborative projects funded by public authorities, 50 of them are still running, 25 of them at European level.
From 2004, CTAG has a research team focused on exploring novel applications for new materials in the transport sector as well as enhancing the efficiency of plastic transformation processes. This team, the Materials Innovation Area, is in charge of the following strategic working lines: smart materials, multi-functional composites, high-performance and lightweight materials, bioinspired composites, novel aesthetics, plastronic and acoustic surfaces.
The Materials Innovation Area is the team in charge of DECOAT project in CTAG. Within this project, CTAG is responsible for the reprocessing and recycling studies to determine the maximum amount of remaining coating that is acceptable to guarantee the circularity of the base substrates used after the debonding processes. This is of paramount importance to enlarge the plastic recycling rate in vehicles since nowadays the recycling of plastic materials from end-of-life vehicles remains marginal and represents among 20-50% of automotive shredded residues.
For further information on CTAG capacities and main activities see www.ctag.com