New facility at Culham Science Centre supports driverless car technology

Culham Science Centre has announced the completion of a new £5.8 million facility, built to support the development of connected and autonomous vehicles (CAV). The sector is estimated to be worth £907bn by 2035.

The new CAV facility

The CAV facility has been named ‘Pit Lane’ due to its resemblance of a Formula 1 garage. The design and construction contractor behind the project is Midas Construction.

Pit Lane was developed by RACE, OxLEP and the Local Growth Fund, and the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV).

Pit Lane – the new facility details

Four purpose-built workspaces, each approximately 2,377 sq. ft. in size, will provide CAV companies with the opportunity to work on two vehicles in the workspace. Office accommodation above will allow technicians to analyse huge quantities of data generated from the cars.

A CAV track control centre from where vehicle movements will be monitored is part of the facility. This will act as the hub for a site-wide fibre optic network that will link with dedicated 4G phone masts and wireless units, something which will boost V2V connectivity (the ability of vehicles to communicate with each other) and further enhance testing capabilities.


Caroline Livingstone, Head of Property, Culham Science Centre / UKAEA, said:

“The completion of Pit Lane signifies an exciting time at Culham Science Centre as we continue to build on the site’s strong heritage by providing world-leading facilities to enable the development of CAV and other robotic technologies.”

“We are committed to ensuring Culham Science Centre remains a major employment centre in Oxfordshire in addition to positioning the UK as a pioneer of advanced technology.”


With 10km of varied and mixed private roads as well as more than 2,000 people on site, Culham Science Centre offers a unique environment for controlled testing of driverless vehicles before they venture out onto public roads.

Culham Science Centre will be hosting a business event later in the year for companies interested in renting one of the Pit Lane facilities.

For further information about the event or driverless car testing facilities at Culham Science Centre, email: or visit