NTU to trial Singapore’s first driverless vehicle
16 August 2013
In a partnership between Nanyang Technological University (NTU), JTC Corporation and Induct Technologies, and supported by the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), an autonomous electric shuttle manufactured by Induct will run a 2 km (1.2-mile) between NTU and JTC CleanTech Park.
The two-year collaboration will see the Energy Research Institute @ NTU (ERI@N) test and optimise Induct’s electric shuttle NAVIA and enable it to intermingle safely with traffic in Singapore. ERI@N and Induct will also work to improve and enhance electric vehicle battery reliability and charging speeds, maximizing the efficiency of NAVIA which can carry eight passengers and has a maximum speed of 20 km/h (12.5 mph).
|NAVIA. Click to enlarge.|
The partnership will also see the development and testing of various new charging technologies such as wireless induction and new supercapacitors for electric vehicles. Software and intelligence systems will also be programmed for planned operation within pre-defined route operating between JTC’s CleanTech One building and the NTU Yunnan Garden campus.
This test-bed is the first of its kind in the region and could pave the way for the integration of autonomous vehicles in Singapore’s transport system to alleviate the “first mile, last mile” transport problem (the first and final legs of a journey, the typical potential bottlenecks in a transportation system) faced by urban cities.
Professor Subodh Mhaisalkar, Executive Director of ERI@N, said the NAVIA platform brings together two state-of-the-art concepts critical for future transportation in urban cities.
Both concepts of a driverless transport and an efficient electric transport are at the forefront of research for personal transportation, last-mile transportation, and for logistics applications in leading automotive companies around the world.—Prof Mhaisalkar
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