As the price of natural gas and electricity is currently high, leading European manufacturers, such as the Slovakian Duslo, the Italian Yara and the Spanish Fertiberia, have postponed the production of Adblue, as it is hardly profitable for them to manufacture it. All this could lead to a shortage crisis for all vehicles that need this component to function properly.

What is AdBlue?

AdBlue is an additive which has been used in diesel vehicles since 2014. It does not pollute, as it is composed of deionized water and 32.5% urea. It is therefore neither flammable nor toxic and protects the environment. However, currently the production of AdBlue has been postponed, causing its price to rise exaggeratedly.

This situation could paralyze European road transport, as the most affected ones are supply trucks and buses, which need AdBlue for their operation. In view of this problem, vehicles with low AdBlue levels are advised to refuel their tank as soon as possible before the price of AdBlue continues to rise uncontrollably.

How will this crisis impact research? 

You may be wondering how AdBlue is related to research. Although we do not work directly with this additive, its shortage will generate problems in supply chains and, therefore, in the logistics of companies. This affects the development of our research projects which rely on electronic components such as chips, boards or graphics cards. All this coupled with the shortage of components that we have been enduring for months and the rising costs of semiconductor wafers, especially at the beginning of 2021.

We are currently developing different devices such as the Datalog_all-one, which allows us to boost energy efficiency. Another example is the WiForAgri project, whose basis is a low-power and low-cost IoT module to be used in smart agriculture scenarios. These are just some of the examples of the hundreds of projects that could potentially be affected if this crisis persists.

Posted by Juan M. Corchado

Juan Manuel Corchado (15 May 1971, Salamanca, Spain) is Professor at the University of Salamanca. He has been Vice-Rector for Research from 2013 to 2017 and Director of the Science Park of the University of Salamanca. Elected as Dean of the Faculty of Science twice, he holds a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Salamanca and a PhD in Artificial Intelligence from the University of the West of Scotland. He leads the renowned BISITE (Bioinformatics, Intelligent Systems and Educational Technology) Research Group, created in 2000. Director of the IoT Digital Innovation Hub and President of the AIR Institute, J. M. Corchado is also Visiting Professor at the Osaka Institute of Technology since January 2015, Visiting Professor at the Universiti Malaysia Kelantan and Member of the Advisory Group on Online Terrorist Propaganda of the European Counter Terrorism Centre (EUROPOL). J. M. Corchado has been president of the IEEE Systems, Man and Cybernetics Society, and academic coordinator of the University Institute for Research in Art and Animation Technology at the University of Salamanca, as well as researcher at the Universities of Paisley (UK), Vigo (Spain) and the Plymouth Marine Laboratory (UK). He currently combines all his activity with the direction of Master programmes in Security, Digital Animation, Mobile Telephony, Information Systems Management, Internet of Things, Social Media, 3D Design and Printing, Blockchain, Z System, Industry 4.0, Agile Project Management, and Smart Cities & Intelligent Buildings, at the University of Salamanca and his work as editor-in-chief of the journals ADCAIJ (Advances in Distributed Computing and Artificial Intelligence Journal), OJCST (Oriental Journal of Computer Science and Technology) or Electronics MDPI (Computer Science & Engineering section). J. M. Corchado mainly works on projects related to Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Blockchain, IoT, Fog Computing, Edge Computing, Smart Cities, Smart Grids and Sentiment Analysis. He has recently been included in the board of trustees of the AstraZeneca Foundation, along with other health professionals and researchers recognised for bringing scientific knowledge closer to society.