Utrecht AI & Mobility Lab

Utrecht AI & Mobility Lab

A collaboration between ProRail, Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS), Qbuzz and Utrecht University.

Heidelberglaan 11, 3584 CS Utrecht

Utrecht AI & Mobility Lab is a collaboration between Utrecht University, ProRail, Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS) and Qbuzz. The lab focuses on innovative AI techniques for various mobility domains such as public transportation, intelligent infrastructure, and mobility behaviour of the public.

Traffic movements of people and goods have grown steadily over the years posing major challenges in terms of safety, accessibility, throughput and emissions. The mission of this lab is to meet these challenges by developing innovative AI techniques. In particular, the mobility lab contributes to the fundamental and applied research by developing and integrating data- and model-driven techniques for the optimization of logistics processes such as train schedules and goods transport, personalized online services, decision-support systems for policy and management in the field of mobility and transport, and the construction of intelligent infrastructure for monitoring and controlling traffic.

AI and public transport

NS, ProRail and Qbuzz are leading public transportation organizations in the Netherlands. They face major challenges where AI research can contribute. The Dutch transportation system is heavily loaded. Previous years, there was an enormous passenger growth. Currently, COVID-19 has an impact on the travel patterns and possible usage of vehicles. The system consists of many interlinked parts with a complicated communication and decision structure, making the system prone to disruptions that cascade easily through it. Public bus transportation is becoming more and more electrified. Facilities are located within crowded urban areas resulting is a strong pressure on the capacity. In the area of AI, important issues are the management and control of vehicles, crew, passenger flows, and infrastructure where the objectives are safety, throughput, robustness, sustainability, accessibility and cost-effectiveness.


Starting April 2024, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines has partnered with the lab to investigate how smart software can assist KLM in crafting strong operational strategies and achieving faster recovery from disruptions.

Sustainable Development Goals

Research projects

Planning sustainable public transport with Qbuzz: To design and develop algorithms for vehicle and crew scheduling that support the transition to electric buses.

Planning at service locations of NS: To design and develop a prototype decision support system for planning at service locations.

Early-warning for out-of-control situations in railway systems: To develop an approach based on complexity science to study the evolution towards oud-of-ontrol situations and to predict these situations.


Marjan van den Akker
Mehdi Dastani
Chris Janssen
Han Hoogeveen

PHD Students

Marjan van den Akker
Mehdi Dastani
Chris Janssen
Han Hoogeveen


ProRail is the railway manager of the Netherlands and responsible for the construction, maintenance, management and safety of the entire railway network.

Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS) is the principal passenger railway operator in the Netherlands.

Qbuzz is a public transport company in the Netherlands that operates services in South Holland, Utrecht, Drenthe and Groningen.

Utrecht University (UU)  is an internationally renowned research university.

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is one of the biggest international operating airlines, based in the Netherlands.

Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS)
Utrecht University

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