Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Driverless transport in big cities

08.08.2006
SINTEF is the only Scandinavian partner in the new EU project CityMobil, in which €40 million will help to develop more efficient transport in European cities.

While traffic problems in major cities have been familiar for a long time, the measures needed to deal with them have still to be put into effect. However, in its 6th Framework Programme, the EU is beating the big drum and looking for more efficient transport solutions in big cities, as well as more rational use of motor traffic. New traffic solutions such as completely automated vehicles moving on tracks, cars in defined corridors (cybercars) and bi-modal vehicles that can alternate between automatic and manual control, will aim to reduce traffic queues and pollution.


cybercar


Not science fiction

“This may sound like pure science fiction,” says senior scientist Torgeir Vaa at SINTEF, “but the technology already exists and a number of demonstrations and pilot studies in this area have already been carried out, and these show that the systems do work. In the future that we are talking about, private cars will have to park at the city limits, and other systems will take over in the centre. This means that there will be a need for rapid public transport systems (buses, trains, underground) and personal transport for short distances.

Heathrow Airport, a new exhibition centre in Rome and the Spanish city of Castellón are the sites that have been selected to demonstrate and confirm the viability of automated transport solutions. When the CityMobil project comes to an end in five years, these sites will have installed fully developed automated transport systems, and the first results will have been evaluated.

The Spanish city of Castellón will adopt bimodal buses that are capable of operating both manually and automatically – depending on where they are. In the new exhibition centre in Rome, a fleet of fully automated cybercars will be part of the fleet of vehicles that carry people between the car park, the railway station and the exhibition centre, while Heathrow will have a transit system that will carry people between the terminal and the car park in fully automated vehicles running on tracks.

From private motoring to public transport

Until now, advanced high technology has made most progress in private cars, where the introduction of ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) has improved driving comfort. ADAS refers to support systems that prevent the driver from exceeding the speed limit by making the accelerator pedal “heavy”, or that ensure that cars keep a safe distance from the vehicle ahead in a traffic queue.

CityMobil is a prolongation of the EU’s earlier Stardust project, in which SINTEF was also involved, and which built demonstration vehicles with ADAS technology that are in use today in the 0 Vision project in Lillehammer and in Trondheim City Operation.

Now, the EU wishes to focus on public transport, where little has been done, with the exception of a few automated metro systems (Paris, London, Lille) and some recently introduced automated buses and small units (Rouen, Eindhoven).

Trondheim in the reference group

The SINTEF scientists regard it as extremely important to be members of the powerful EU consortium that comprises Europe’s total expertise in this area, with the Netherlands’ TNO in the driving seat, as it were. This large-scale European project consists of five sub-projects, and SINTEF will be involved in two of these, on tasks that include payment systems and safety legislation and regulations.

“Imagine that you arrive at Heathrow and want to get from the car park to the terminal”, say Vaa. “You call up an automatic driverless unit that is circulating and comes to the spot where you are parked. But what about personal protection and safety aspects? What about other people who are standing at the same parking place? Another example concerns driverless vehicles in mixed traffic; who would be responsible in the event of an accident?”

Trondheim has also been selected as a member of a reference group of 15 European cities that will submit relevant problems to CityMobil and test out technological solutions in the course of the project.

“Although Rome, Castellón and Heathrow are the major demonstration sites, plans and concepts will also be set out for a number of other cities, in order to help local authorities make decisions regarding automated transport systems,” says Vaa. “Some of these cities will also benefit from hosting small-scale demonstrations of automated vehicles. This will all depend on how active the individual cities are. Both the City of Trondheim and the Directorate of Public Roads are members of the reference group, and we hope to have the new transport solutions demonstrated in Trondheim and perhaps in other Norwegian cities as part of the project.”

The CityMobil project has a budget of € 40 million and involves 28 partners in 10 different countries. SINTEF’s share is around € 4 million.

Aase Dragland | alfa
Further information:
http://www.sintef.no

More articles from Transportation and Logistics:

nachricht Experiments show that a few self-driving cars can dramatically improve traffic flow
10.05.2017 | University of Illinois College of Engineering

nachricht Tool helps cities to plan electric bus routes, and calculate the benefits
09.01.2017 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

All articles from Transportation and Logistics >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can the immune system be boosted against Staphylococcus aureus by delivery of messenger RNA?

Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.

Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a bacterium that colonizes by far more than half of the skin and the mucosa of adults, usually without causing infections....

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

How herpesviruses win the footrace against the immune system

26.05.2017 | Life Sciences

Water forms 'spine of hydration' around DNA, group finds

26.05.2017 | Life Sciences

First Juno science results supported by University of Leicester's Jupiter 'forecast'

26.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>