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GRT

self-driving people mover makes its maiden trip at Brussels Airport

This self-driving shuttle is state-of-the-art technology that fuels the imagination. It is an investment in the future, in efficiency, in image and in the seductive power of our public transport. 

Maiden trip at Brussels Airport

The self-driving people mover has clocked up its first few metres at Brussels Airport. Over the coming 3 days, the shuttle bus will perform several demo trips without passengers to test the technology in a real-life environment. These tests see De Lijn and Brussels Airport’s ambitious pilot project step up a gear. In 2021, the self-driving people mover will commute autonomously between the terminal and cargo business area and parking lots. “It’s set to become the showpiece of public transport in Flanders,” says Flemish Minister for Mobility, Ben Weyts. “Foreign visitors will instantly perceive us as an innovative region.”

Brussels Airport is the setting for an ambitious pilot project with a self-driving people mover operated by De Lijn. In the coming days, the shuttle bus from manufacturer 2getthere will make its first demo trips past the terminal so passengers who stop at the spring terrace will be able to see it drive by. For the time being, the bus will run without passengers. Driverless vehicles abroad typically drive in their own dedicated lanes. However, the pilot project at Brussels Airport ultimately aims to enable the self-driving shuttle to navigate autonomously through mixed traffic.

“This self-driving shuttle is state-of-the-art technology that fuels the imagination,” says Flemish Minister for Mobility, Ben Weyts. “And this pilot project is bringing that imagination to life. We’re harnessing innovation to further strengthen the De Lijn service offering. This is an investment in the future, in efficiency, in image and in the seductive power of our public transport. Flanders and De Lijn are playing a truly pioneering role in this regard.”

“‘Intelligent mobility’ is one of our strategic priorities for sustainable development over the coming years,” says Brussels Airport Company CEO, Arnaud Feist. “We want to encourage passengers and employees to increasingly travel to the airport by public transport. This joint project with De Lijn, which commenced in 2015, is one of the initiatives specifically aimed at achieving this objective. We’re now exploring how self-driving buses can be deployed to improve the efficiency of passenger transport on the airport grounds.”

Innovation presents fantastic opportunities

The self-driving electric bus follows virtual routes which it uses to continuously calculate its position. Deviations from the planned route are corrected on the basis of artificial reference points. The vehicles are also equipped with sensors for detecting other objects in the vicinity.

CEO of manufacturer 2getthere, Carel C. van Helsdingen, states: “De Lijn and Brussels Airport are setting a new global standard with this project. Selection, based on specific reliability and safety requirements in addition to proven test results, requires a rigorous approach based on innovative technology. It’s a challenging project and we’re proud to have been selected as the manufacturer. We’re looking forward to our continued collaboration, the system rollout and the future transportation of passengers.”

The technology can also help support drivers in the field of road safety. And there are benefits for tourism too. Foreign visitors instantly perceive Flanders as a contemporary region, where investments are made in innovation.

“We’re on the verge of a breakthrough in autonomous transport,” confirms De Lijn director general, Roger Kesteloot. “It’s now a question of getting on board and developing technology tailored to public transport. In the context of basic accessibility, we’re working on the development of a highly developed basic network. If we can reinforce this with a flexible range of shared shuttle vehicles, then we can satisfy the major mobility challenges of the future.”

Driverless shuttle service between airport terminal and cargo business zone

De Lijn and Brussels Airport Company intend launching an autonomous shuttle service between the airport terminal and the cargo business zone and parking areas in 2021. Safe, sustainable and flexible self-driving electric people movers will be deployed to provide a high frequency service. The shuttle is intended to run independently at an average speed of 20 km/hour over a short, fixed route that’s equipped with magnets and sensors. The magnets are located in the ground and serve as beacons that indicate the way. The sensors are built into the bus in order to detect other objects in the vicinity. Local modifications may be needed to reduce traffic complexity. However, as the people mover is designed to share the road with other traffic, no separate lanes will be required.

The next steps in the self-driving people mover project:

  • The pilot project is currently in the development phase. Test rides will be conducted on-site at the manufacturer, 2getthere, in Utrecht in order to test the technology. The technology will be further developed based on these results.
  • In the course of 2020, additional testing will take place over a longer period in mixed traffic, in the Brucargo business zone. The test rides will be carried out without passengers, however, there will be a steward on board. They are intended to test the bus operation in all weather conditions and traffic scenarios. All competent authorities will monitor the development process.
  • Should these tests reap positive results, the passenger system can be further expanded, and the dispatch centre, bus stop interfaces and charging stations additionally incorporated. The aim is to then operate the people movers without a steward on board, but instead monitor the rides from a dispatch centre.
  • Passenger transport is anticipated to commence mid-2021.
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The future of urban mobility (26-27 february): 2getthere’s 3rd generation autonomous shuttle

the-future-of-urban-mobility

The future of urban mobility is here: explore the technology and innovation for urban mobility and emerging smart transport infrastructure models.

Experience the 3rd generation autonomous shuttle

On February 26 and 27, 2getthere’s 3rd generation is on full display at the Smart Urban Mobility conference in Dubai. The vehicle on display is a fully customized version, featuring a special livery. Details on the custimization and the livery will only be released at a later date – keep an eye on our social media.

2getthere’s autonomous vehicle is unique in the market: it is the only vehicle that is bi-directional and features doors on both sides. In addition, it is the only one featuring an air-conditioning fit for the Middle East climate. It features a higher speed as well: up to 40km/hr. The vehicle sets itself apart in its look-and-feel (designed by Zagato) and build quality (assembly by Altran). It accommodates up to 24 passengers and features rapid recharging (within 10 minutes), thus requiring a significantly smaller fleet size to meet the capacity throughout the day.

Want to hear and see more? Curious about the customization and livery? Visit us at ‘The Future of Urban Mobility’!

The future of smart urban mobility is here

Middle East Smart Mobility is a strategic high-level conference and collocated exhibition covering major industry trends from intelligent transport systems, autonomous travel, urban planning, sustainable mobility, payments and ticketing, big data and analytics, connected transport and much more. Bringing together over 200 speakers and 7500 attendees from across the region, this event will cover the entire smart transport ecosystem.

The exhibition and conference is organized alongside Middle East Rail.

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Test Engineer

Test Engineer

by Rolo

2getthere is looking for a Test Engineer wanting to prepare and execute the required test cases to deliver autonomous vehicle systems to projects worldwide

Description

Looking for international job experience? A desire to work with cutting edge technology involving automated vehicles? The company 2getthere has a long history in control of automated vehicles. These vehicles are controlled using software and are managed fleet wide using a supervisory system both of which are developed by 2getthere. With an increasing amount of projects we have an opportunity for an additional test engineer. The test engineer will be responsible for the preparation and execution of the required test cases for both the automated vehicle and supervisor systems, followed by administrating and communicating the results.

Job Duties

– Set up and configuration for new applications
– Reviewing requirements and specifications
– Preparation and execution of different levels of testing during a project. The scope of testing varies from a single component to a complete system with multiple vehicles
   – Troubleshooting (complex) electro-mechanical systems
   – Reporting and solving any issues that arise, in cooperation with development teams
– Reporting and documenting of test results
– Training and support, on-site and remotely
– Customer and internal demonstration of developed systems

Your skills and expertise:

You have a bachelor in Mechanical-, electrical- ,control systems engineering, computer science, mechatronics, industrial automation or related fields.

Minimum qualifications:
– Two years experience in testing mechatronic applications
– Take ownership of work, strong sense of responsibility
– Stress resistant
– Ability to work in a team, including remotely
– Hands-on mentality
– Strong analytical capabilities
– Accuracy in test execution, documentation and reporting
– Professional communication in English and Dutch
– Willingness to travel abroad

Preferred qualifications:
– 2-5 years experience testing mechatronic applications
– Multi disciplinary
– Good at keeping an overview
– Programming/Scripting experience, e.g. C/C++, python,
   bash and tcl
– Experience with Linux (Ubuntu)

Our offer:

We offer you a position as a test engineer in a growing organization, an innovative work environment, fresh brewed coffee during working hours and colleagues with humor. Salary and benefits are competitive, based on knowledge and experience.

Please note that this vacancy is open to applicants from within the EU only. Relocation to the Netherlands is required. Relocation costs are not reimbursed.

Recruitment by commercial agencies in relation to this vacancy is not appreciated.

Apply now

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Autonomous Shuttles: mixed traffic on existing roads for financially viable transit for modest volumes

Driverless Buses

Driverless buses are the future, as Morgan Stanley states the car of the future is shared, autonomous and electric. Which means that the introduction of driverless vehicles actually starts – and should start – with the introduction of autonomous shuttles. Such public transit vehicles are the key to ensure the liveability of cities by ensuring the appeal of the driverless car doesn’t result in an increase of the number of cars and car movements on city streets. Driverless buses are available as a 4-passenger taxi and 20-passenger mini-bus.

Mixed traffic

Safely integrating driverless buses in mixed traffic is (only) possible today when operating in a semi-controlled environment. In suchenvironment the complexity of mixed operations is reduced through a degree of control over the four application aspects (1) speed, (2) intersections, (3) access and (4) behavior. In case of insufficient control of the complexity the only way to ensure the safety today, is by means of safety driver or steward and low(er) speeds restricting the throughput and capcity that can be realized.

2getthere’s applications

The first applications of driverless buses are expected in a limited size, dedicated area. 2getthere’s Rivium system operates in a semi-controlled environment: although operating on a dedicated track, there is no control over access to the track and the behavior of other road users. The vehicles were actually used in various mixed traffic demonstrations in 2003 and 2004. The Rivium ParkShuttle serves as a benchmark for 2getthere in the study of the requirements for safe integration of automated vehicles in various environments.

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Automated Transit Networks: direct origin to destination travel on a network of dedicated guideways

Automated Transit Networks

2getthere’s Automated Transit Networks (ATN) feature automated vehicles operating on a dedicated network of ‘guideways’. They are able to serve numerous origins and destinations, with the guideways optionally constructed at grade, with at grade intersections. Passengers benefit from on demand operations or at a high frequency. At the same time cities benefit from the reduction of car traffic, congestion and the environmentally friendly character. Developers maximize land value and reduce space wasted for non-value added activities.

2getthere’s ATN

2getthere deploys two types of automated vehicles in ATN networks: the 4 to 6 passenger PRT (Personal Rapid Transit) and the 16 to 24 passenger GRT (Group Rapid Transit). The PRT vehicles operate as automated taxi’s: on demand, connecting origin-to-destination directly, with passengers paying for the service per vehicle. The GRT vehicles resemble automated mini-busses: operating at a high frequency, with passengers paying for transit per seat. Typical applications include universities, hospitals, business parks and airports.

Why opt for ATN?

ATN systems’ dedicated guideways ensure both safety and throughput, while the small and light-weight automated vehicles provide flexibility to operate in a network.They provide lower operational and life-cycle costs compared to APM systems. 2getthere is the leading supplier of ATN systems, with 4 applications realized to date. This includes the first (and only) automated vehicle system with at grade intersections at Rivium business park in the city of Capelle aan den IJssel (the Netherlands) and the world’s first PRT system at Masdar City (Abu Dhabi).

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Automated People Movers: segragated infrastructure with grade separated crossings for high capacities

 

Automated People Mover Systems

Automated People Mover Systems (APM) use dedicated (elevated) guideways to facilitate direct, high capacity connections along a corridor. Where traditional APM systems use large vehicles at low frequencies, 2getthere employs 24-passenger GRT vehicles at high frequencies. The system accommodates capacities in excess of 5,000 passengers per hour per direction. With a maximum speed of 60km/hr, the system is suited to serve both short connections (up to 1.5 kilometer) as well as long corridors (e.g. 12 kilometers).

De-railing APM costs

2getthere’s Automated People Mover Systems cost 50% to 75% of traditional systems. The actual difference depends on the required capacity and the length of the connection. This cost advantage directly results from the lack of rail, the reduced infrastructure costs and the increased flexibility. The off-line stations allow express connections between major attractors to be established. In addition the service level is higher (and hence the possible revenues), resulting in a more attractive business case.

People Mover Applications

Automated People Mover Systems are common at the world’s major airports. The lower costs make 2getthere’s APM systems suited for smaller airports as well. The systems are also suited for urban applications, both for point-to-point connections as well as corridors. This is especially the case when initial demand is relatively low and growing over time, or in case of significant deviations in demand between the various hours of operations. The smaller vehicles and flexibility allows for networks to be realized.

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a Mondial impression

Mondial Impression 2018Robbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer

The exhibition was very succesful with our GRT vehicle drawing praise for looks, spaciousness and engineering quality.

A Mondial impression

In conjunction with the Paris Autoshow, MONDIAL.TECH was organized. 2getthere’s GRT vehicle was exhibited at the booth of our vehicle engineering partner Altran, as part of the new international BtoB experience for mobility innovators to meet and make business. Altran developed the vehicle chassis for 2getthere and responsible for the vehicle engineering as well as the assembly of the first series. With the work for 2getthere, this automatically makes Altran the largest French supplier of autonomous shuttles.

To get an impression of the show and what you missed, see the video below!

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Podcar City Gavle

Podcar City GavleDennis Mica, Business Development Manager

We look forward to discussing dedicated lanes versus mixed traffic and the added value to passengers at Podcar City.

PodCar City Gavle

Podcar City Gavle is organized from October 10-12, 2018. The conference focuses on how we can plan for automated shared mobility, bringing together autonomous shuttles and automated transit networks. Where the autonomous shuttles focus on mixed traffic, automated transit networks typically feature dedicated right-of-way: an interesting debate, which surely will be present at the conference as well. Which provides the better travel exprience, features a more desireable business case? The pace of innovation has increased significantly with more systems providers, more interested cities and not least the general public realizing the need for better solutions to the overwhelming congestion in their cities.

2getthere contribution

2getthere is an obvious choice to contribute to Podcar City Gavle and the session about ‘lessons learned & innovations’ on October 11, featuring the longest track record of all comapnies, while also being the first under contract for the delivery of a permanent autonomous shuttle system in mixed traffic. Dennis Mica will again take the stage the next day, contributing to the session ‘what’s coming next’.

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Innovation Expo

Innovation ExpoDennis Mica, Business Development Manager

The most advanced autonomous vehicle, to be introduced at Rivium business park next year, will be at the Innovation Expo.

3rd gen Autonomous Shuttle

The Innovation Expo 2018 (October 4) is open to visitors from 09.00 a.m. until 08.00 p.m. The bustling expo hall (closing at 06.00 p.m.) features a host of interesting and amazing innovations. In addition, you may participate in in-depth substantive sessions. 2getthere will be exhibiting as well: for more information please visit https://innovationexpo2018.nl/en/programma/2getthere/.

Just like at Intertraffic, 2getthere will have its 3rd generation vehicle on display. The vehicles is the most advanced in the market and is in a class of its own in terms of build quality. This is a direct result of the long life requirement set for the vehicle, while being developed for the heavy requirements of public transit use. Join us at the RDM campus to see for yourself that self driving vehicles are mature enough to provide operations on a daily basis.

Innovation Expo

Taking innovations further, realising breakthroughs, and thus contributing to the social challenges we are facing in our country and in the world. That is the ambition of the Innovation Expo 2018 (IE2018) in Rotterdam. On 4 October 2018, the RDM Submarine Wharf in Rotterdam South will be transformed into one big Living Lab. A while ago, under the flag of the National Programme Rotterdam South, we started to work on improving education, employment, safety, and living conditions in this area. Here, in these remarkable, dynamic surroundings, participants in the IE2018 will experience the latest trends and innovations that help to keep our country safe, liveable, and accessible.

The IE2018 is a sample sheet of the most recent and high-profile developments that the Netherlands has to offer. We will present Dutch solutions to the major social challenges in the fields of the circular economy, energy, water, mobility, the built-up environment, health, and food, as well as the required enabling technologies.

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Contributing to the Airport Access Ideas Forum

Airport Access Ideas ForumMilda Manomaityte, Director of the Global AirRail Alliance

The Forum gives the opportunity for transport professionals to challenge themselves and each other with forward thinking discussions.

Airport Access Ideas Forum

2getthere’s Dennis Mica will be contributing to the second Airport Access Ideas Forum on Wednesday 27th of June in London. The Forum is an event designed to highlight the key challenges airports, city planners and ground transport operators need to prepare for when planning airport access for future users.

The Forum will focus on Autonomous Vehicles Technologies and Mobility as a Service, looking into how it will impact the future of airport infrastructure design, non-aeronautical revenues, public transport access mode share and urban development. Attendees discuss the latest innovations in passenger mobility and their effect on airport access, including infrastructure planning, revenue and passenger experience. Through interactive discussions the Forum participants look at how new technologies and the sharing economy is changing road access and car parking businesses at airports, as well as the opportunities public transport can deliver for airport operators in terms of non-aeronautical revenue, improved customer experience and business development.

For more information on the agenda, please visit the event page.

About GARA

The Global AirRail Alliance focuses on connecting air with rail. Why? Because, together, air and rail can transform our travel experience. When integrated seamlessly, both in the cloud and on the ground, it forms a major chunk of our travels and can significantly improve our experience. By connecting people who work in these two big industries, by learning and comparing information about it, GARA creates a platform where business from around the world can improve their own operations, better connect with their customers and optimise their procedures.

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Help support 2getthere employees swim for a good cause!

SingelSwimRobbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer

In addition to sponsoring the good cause, 2getthere also wanted to protect fading hairlines with fashionable bathing caps.

Singelswim: join the cause!

On June 17, our brave and big-hearted collegues Henry Raekers and Wouter Boessenkool will take the plunge into the Utrecht Singel to raise money for a good cause: support research into the muscle disease FSHD. In addition to sponsoring the good cause, 2getthere also wanted to protect our colleagues fading hairlines with fashionable bathing caps. The bright orange color caps, branded with 2getthere logo, should ensure they are also easy to recognize amongst all the other swimmers!

2getthere has contributed a base amount and is doubling the contributions made by colleagues. Still, there is a target that we want to exceed and obviously you can help. Please donate here!

When contributing >100 Euro, the team has stated they will add your company as a co-sponsor on their page.

Singelswim History

The SingelSwim Utrecht is the only swim in the oldest canal in the Netherlands: Utrecht Singel. The idea to organize the SingelSwim Utrecht was born in 2013. In 2015 the first edition took place with a great success. Singel Swim Utrecht is a charity event entirely dedicated to collecting funds and raising the awareness of the FSHD muscle disease. The initiative is supported by the FSHD Foundation and the Foundation Muscles for Muscles.

The funds raised during the SingelSwim Utrecht are 100% allocated to the research for a cure for FSHD. The choice of the research is jointly determined by the FSHD Foundation and the Foundation Muscles for Muscles. The foundation’s objective is to draw attention to muscle diseases in general and to collecting and donating money to finance the development of better treatments of these diseases. Members of the Board of the Foundation SingelSwim Utrecht are non-paid volunteers.

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We are at the SmartDrivingCar Summit, join us!

SmartDrivingCar-SummitSmartDrivingCar Summit

Autonomous vehicles will disrupt and revolutionize mobility for communities, corporations and consumers.

SmartDrivingCar Summit

2getthere will be presenting at the second annual SmartDrivingCar Summit, reporting on the developments in relation to the recent announcement for the Rivium, NTU and Zaventem projects. The conference brings together buyers, sellers and facilitators of autonomous cars, trucks, and buses. It looks at the economic forces behind deployment and commercialization of autonomous vehicle technology—supply, demand, and public oversight.

The event is co-chaired by Prof. Alain Kornhauser of Princeton University and features a mix of academic, industry, and government speakers with each session packed with multiple experts. The conference features six workshops that will examine:
– Near-term autonomous vehicle deployment in the U.S.
– Near-term autonomous vehicle deployment in China and Europe
– The role of insurance in facilitating adoption by individuals, corporations and transit agencies
– Artificial intelligence, looking at sensors, software and data
– Ride hailing services, reviewing conventional, self-driving and driverless advances
– The what, how and when of achieving best outcomes in metropolitan planning

Focus Areas

Near-term Safety Benefits of Safe-driving Cars
How insurance and new car dealers can benefit by promoting the RoI advantages to fleets and mutually beneficial promotional discounts to consumers. As well as an update as to the performance in automatically avoiding crashes of the technology options available in showrooms today.

Near-term Regulatory Challenges
that are needed to facilitate the shared use of our existing streets by low and normal speed Driverless vehicles

Near-term Mobility and Community Service Benefits
of the array of emerging low-speed Driverless shuttles to all in gated communities and campuses, to the mobility disadvantaged in many/most suburban communities and to address first-mile, last-mile accessibility challenges in transit-oriented communities

The Current State-of-the-art in DeepDriving
to the long-term opportunities of using affordable Computer Vision and elegant Deep Learning training, testing and enhancing techniques in SmartDrivingCars, and more.

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Livery of the Bluewaters Island vehicles revealed during UITP Middle East

Buewaters-liveryRobbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer

innovation in public transit ensures not only the accessibility but also improves the liveability of smart cities like Dubai

Bluewaters Livery

In collaboration with Meraas, the Dubai-based holding company behind some of the city’s most popular urban destinations, Dutch technology firm 2getthere officially revealed the first Group Rapid Transit autonomous vehicle that will be used at Bluewaters. The new vehicle in Bluewaters livery was showcased during the UITP MENA Transport Congress and Exhibition, the most attended public transport event in the region. It is the first time that the public in Dubai will be able to get acquainted with this futuristic public transport solution.

Bluewaters is a modern, family-oriented destination created by Meraas on a manmade island off the coast of Jumeirah Beach Residence in Dubai. No less than 25 autonomous vehicles will be deployed to transport passengers from Dubai Metro to the island. These vehicles are designed and developed by 2getthere, a leading technology firm in autonomous transport.

The solution provided for the connection to Bluewaters is a perfect fit with Dubai’s Autonomous Transport Strategy, which was launched in 2017 by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. In line with this ambitious strategy, 25 percent of all transportation trips in Dubai will be smart and driverless by 2030.

Converging trends

This year’s edition of the UITP MENA Transport Congress & Exhibition is based on the theme ‘Pioneering for Customer Happiness’, recognising that customers are at the core of public transport service. According to Robbert Lohmann, CCO of 2getthere, there is therefore no better opportunity to present the Bluewaters autonomous vehicles to the public. 2getthere will realise the project through its Middle East Joint Venture with United Technical Services.

Mr. Lohmann says: “It becomes clear that multiple trends in public transportation are converging. Firstly, innovation within public transit concepts and systems, ensuring not only the accessibility but also improving the liveability of smart cities like Dubai. Secondly, integrating new technologies leads to more customer happiness and increasing ridership. Together these trends contribute to both people in transit as well as in cities.”

2gethere can be found on stand no. 5C52 of the UITP MENA Transport Congress and Exhibition.

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Brussels Airport selects 2getthere for autonomous shuttle system

Brussels-Airport-Autonomous-ShuttleBen Weyts, Flemish Minister for Mobility

We are making an investment in the future, in greater efficiency and in a more attractive range of public transport

Following assignments by Bluewaters Island (Dubai) and Nanyang Technological University (Singapore), Brussels Airport and De Lijn have decided to partner with 2getthere for the Brussels Airport Autonomous Shuttle. 2getthere’s fully autonomous (self-driving) shuttles will link Brussels Airport with the long term parking area. Brussels Airport is the first European airport to use autonomous shuttles in fully mixed traffic. The vehicles are expected to hit the road in 2021, after an intensive pilot phase, starting in 2019. Four other constructors were in the race for this highly desirable assignment. Please find below the joint Press Release by Brussels Airport and De Lijn.

Brussels Airport Autonomous Shuttle

The board of directors of De Lijn and the management committee of Brussels Airport Company have given the go-ahead for the first phase with a self-driving electric bus on the airport. The vehicle that is being developed for this, will be one of the first to drive in Belgium in mixed traffic. After the summer of 2019, tests without passengers will begin at 2getthere’s testsite in Utrecht. The shuttle bus will arrive at Brussels Airport in the beginning of 2020 for further tests.

Pioneering

In 2015, Brussels Airport Company and De Lijn entered into a partnership with the intent to deploy self-driving shuttles at the airport. After further study and the choice of the constructor, both companies gave full support to the pilot project for testing an autonomous shuttle on the airport grounds.

“As intermodal hub where various means of transport connect seamlessly with each other, Brussels Airport is constantly studying new possibilities for expanding this hub in a sustainable way. This technologically innovative project deploying a self-driving electric bus operating a fixed route, also fits in with our environmental commitment to keep the impact on our surroundings as low as possible”, says Arnaud Feist, CEO of Brussels Airport Company.

“Flanders is taking on the role of pioneer”, says Flemish Minister for Mobility Ben Weyts. “In other countries driverless vehicles are already operational, but that is often in a separate lane with a steward on board. Here, the aim is to have the self-driving shuttle drive autonomously on the public roads. This is cutting-edge technology that really appeals to the imagination. We are making an investment in the future, in greater efficiency and in a more attractive range of public transport.”

2 year tests

2getthere will start the project in the coming weeks. The contract is divided into two phases. The first phase covers the development and thorough testing of the technology until the middle of 2020. In autumn 2019, 2getthere will be conducting the first vehicle tests at its testsite in Utrecht. Upon successful completion, the first self-driving bus will arrive at Brussels Airport in the beginning of 2020 for further test drives at the airport. The test route for this development stage is in the Brucargo business zone.

The first phase with tests and development of the self-driving bus will take two years. In this period, De Lijn and Brussels Airport Company can perform all necessary safety tests in various weather conditions and traffic situations. During the test period, no passengers, visitors or staff will be on board.

Passengers by 2021

Upon a positive evaluation of the first phase of testing, De Lijn and Brussels Airport Company can deploy the self-driving shuttle from 2021 onwards on the airport grounds for the transport of passengers, visitors and staff on the route between the terminal and Brucargo.

Brussels Airport Company and De Lijn are sharing the project costs. De Lijn is responsible for the costs associated with people who travel by public transport (De Lijn, MIVB, NMBS) to the airport. The airport operator will foot the costs for the transport of persons who come to the airport by other means of transport (staff, visitors or passengers).

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MoU signed for Nanyang Technological University

MOU-for-NTU-SingaporeSjoerd van der Zwaan, Chief Technology Officer

NTU has ample experience with autonomous vehicles and knows exactly what it wants and what it doesn’t want

2getthere signs MoU for NTU

Today, 2getthere, the Utrecht-based company specializing in autonomous transit systems, Nanyang Technological University (NTU Singapore) and SMRT Services have joined forces to deploy fully automated Group Rapid Transit (GRT) autonomous vehicles (AV) on the NTU Smart Campus by 2019. The three parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at a ceremony, paving the way for the GRT to be integrated into NTU’s transport network. The new GRTs will be tested on NTU’s campus in a few phases, which will start around the last quarter this year. The vehicles are expected to operate a service route that connects NTU’s halls of residences with the main academic areas, serving 200 to 300 passengers daily.

The 2getthere silent roadster uses magnetic pellets on the road for autonomous navigation and can travel in both directions. It has a top speed of 40 kilometres per hour and can ferry 24 passengers with seating space for eight. The collaboration will also involve conducting research to improve autonomous vehicle technologies such as increasing the use of artificial intelligence, developing advanced sensors and sensor fusion algorithms, and improving fleet management technologies. The trial would be gradually expanded campus-wide, running alongside other autonomous vehicles that have already been undergoing tests since 2012. This latest testbedding of autonomous vehicles is part of the university’s Smart Campus initiative to develop rapidly advancing transport technologies to benefit the NTU community and society.

NTU knows what it wants

Mr Sjoerd van der Zwaan, Chief Technology Officer of 2getthere, stated, “It is exciting to be able to work together with NTU and SMRT while capitalising on the synergy of an actual AV implementation and investing in research simultaneously. NTU has ample experience with autonomous vehicles and knows exactly what it wants and what it doesn’t want – in terms of availability, reliability, quality, safety and AV features such as comfort and user experience. In combination with SMRT’s operations expertise, all key ingredients are present to ensure a successful implementation of our AVs at NTU. We look forward to our continued cooperation.”

NTU President Professor Subra Suresh, said, “NTU’s campus is not only a living testbed for innovative technologies, but also the first to test driverless vehicles on Singapore roads. Autonomous vehicles are an integral part of the NTU Smart Campus vision, which leverages tech-enabled solutions to create better living and learning experiences. This new collaboration with SMRT and 2getthere highlights our goal of developing cutting-edge transport solutions that will benefit Singapore and beyond.”

Mr Desmond Kuek, President and Group CEO of SMRT, said, “NTU is a leading research institution in AV technology. SMRT is proud to work with NTU and 2getthere to deploy the first operational AV service in Singapore. This MoU marks the commitment of the three parties in leveraging the latest AV technology for our public transport system and redefine the standard for a world-class transport service.”

The GRT had undergone preliminary tests along a 350-metre route between two NTU halls of residences since November last year. During the trials, close to 4,000 passengers were ferried between the two stops.

Part of the joint MaaS testbed

The GRT was introduced to NTU as part of the Mobility-as-a-Service testbed, a collaboration between NTU, JTC and SMRT last September. The testbed seeks to integrate multiple modes of transport, including shuttle buses, bike sharing systems, e-scooters and e-bikes, and the autonomous GRT into a single mobility platform called jalan-jalan, developed by mobilityX to improve connectivity and travel within NTU’s campus and JTC’s CleanTech Park in Jurong Innovation District, which will be the largest living lab in Singapore. Jalan-jalan is a Malay term for ‘going for a walk’.

The smartphone application jalan-jalan received strong support during its pilot run between NTU’s campus and JTC’s CleanTech Park from last August. Just for e-scooters alone, the app was used to book over 67,000 trips, clocking a total mileage of over 80,000 kilometres.

Edward Lim Xun Qian, President of NTU’s Student Union, said, “The app allows a seamless and convenient way to travel around NTU’s large campus, right from our halls to our classes. Not only does it help us book Personal Mobility Devices such as e-scooters, the app is also integrated with public and shuttle buses around campus, providing an all-in-one transport solution for students.”

Colin Lim, mobilityX CEO said, “The NTU and CTP community have a greater range of transport options, and have experienced improved connectivity through innovative first-and-last mile transport solutions like the AV and scooter and bicycle sharing. For example, the utilisation rate of each scooter at approximately 20 trips/day is one of the highest in Singapore.”

Glory Wee, Director, Aerospace, Marine and Urban Solutions, JTC said, “We are delighted by the positive response from the CleanTech Park community on the trial. Urban solutions, such as Mobility-as-a-Service, help us improve the travel experience of the communities in JTC’s estates and lay the foundation for next-generation connectivity and mobility infrastructure in our new estates.”

Currently serving 12 stops on NTU’s campus and the CleanTech Park area, the app will gradually include more stops and manage more mobility options based on users’ feedback and test results.

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Automated transit at Nanyang Technological University


Automated transit at NTU

A research-intensive public university, Nanyang Technological University (Singapore) has 33,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students in the colleges of Engineering, Business, Science, and Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, and its Interdisciplinary Graduate School. Together with LTA (Land Transport Authority), NTU launched the Centre of Excellence for Testing and Research of Autonomous Vehicles (Cetran) where autonomous, or self-driving, vehicles are tested before hitting Singapore roads. It features an extensive Singapore campus.

System Description

2getthere’s fully automated Group Rapid Transit (GRT) autonomous vehicles (AV) will ultimately replace the existing buses on the NTU Smart Campus. The new GRTs will be tested on NTU’s campus in a few phases. The vehicles are expected to operate a service route first that connects NTU’s halls of residences with the main academic areas. The trial would be gradually expanded campus-wide. The deployment is part of the university’s Smart Campus initiative to develop rapidly advancing transport technologies to benefit the NTU community and society.

Technological Cooperation

The collaboration will also involve conducting research to improve autonomous vehicle technologies such as increasing the use of artificial intelligence, developing advanced sensors and sensor fusion algorithms, and improving fleet management technologies. Autonomous vehicles are an integral part of the NTU Smart Campus vision, which leverages tech-enabled solutions to create better living and learning experiences. The collaboration allows for the development of cutting-edge transport solutions that will benefit Singapore and beyond.

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Exhibiting 3rd generation GRT vehicle at UITP Dubai

UITP-MenaRobbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer

“There is nothing like seeing and feeling to understand; the quality of the vehicle sets it apart.”

2getthere vehicle at UITP

At the upcoming UITP Mena congress and exhibition, 2getthere will be displaying its 3rd generation GRT autonomous vehicle. Accommodating up to 24 passengers, the vehicle will be featured first in the Bluewaters Island development by Meraas. “Experience from other exhibitions has taught us that there is nothing better than seeing and feeling to understand what the new generation vehicle can contribute to the accessibility of a development. Having the vehicle there makes it real, people can touch it, sit it and experience the dimensions and comfort. The quality of the vehicle, both in design and build, really sets it apart.”, according to Robbert Lohmann.

If you are interested to meet with us, please reach out and contact us.

About UITP Mena

With a growing number of participants, technical offers, networking opportunities, and an extensive exhibition showcasing who’s who in the public transport industry, the MENA Transport Congress and Exhibition is the premiere and most attended public transport event in the Region.

The 2018 theme of the MENA Transport Congress & Exhibition, “pioneering for CUSTOMER happiness”, recognizes the customer as the core of public transport service and incorporates happiness and not only satisfaction. From autonomous technologies to transport network services and introduction of public transport services in new markets, perhaps the region stands out most how to best address social and cultural barriers to using public transport.

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Workhorse testing of the 3rd generation vehicle

Workhorse-testingRobbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer

[quote]”It is really good to see testing progressing for the projects in delivery – especially the speed is impressive.”[/quote]
 

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Workhorse Testing

For the new generation GRT vehicle workhorse testing is progressing. At 2getthere’s Utrecht based testsite, the verification and validation team has been busy for months with vehicle tests. On Friday April 5th we filmed one of the first tests with a fully loaded vehicle at 35 kilometers per hour. Even though the speed is already impressive, we are even more pleased with the stability and comfort on the vehicle on the uneven surface and the low noise levels. The workhorse testing is a typical step in 2getthere’s system lifecycle approach. After having tested the basic functionality of the vehicle platform over the last few months, we have now reached the stage where higher velocity tests are being conducted. Once all these tests pass, we’ll move on to a similar phased testing program for the first prototype.

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Differntiator

Robbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer: “With the Bluewaters and Rivium projects under contract, it is really good to see testing progressing. We have a very good team that is working dilligently on completing the engineering and the testing of the new generation vehicle. Together with the cutting-edge supervisory system, it easily puts ahead of the remainder of the market. In terms of fucntionality, technology robustness and driving behavior, 2getthere’s offering is simply much better. More and more we also see the market becoming aware and realizing that we deliver a lot more than a simple demonstration.’

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2getthere opens project office at business park Rivium

Most-advanced-autonomous-vehicleFrans Goyarts, Chief Operations Officer

“The project office provides us a space at the heart of the project and accommodates our employees from the region.”

Rivium Project Office

With the recent award of the replacement and expansion of the Rivium project, 2getthere decided to open an office at the business park. Being close to the site where the system needs to be installed, allows for project meetings to be held locally and work closely alongside the city of Capelle aan den IJssel, MRDH and all other parties involved in the delivery of the project. The office is at a premium location, overlooking the river ‘Nieuwe Maas’ and the Van Brienenoord-bridge.

Regional Workforce

The Rivium office also provides an office close to home for 2getthere employees living in the Rotterdam-the Hague area. With many of 2getthere’s employees having graduated from the Technical University in Delft, the area is well represented among the company’s workforce. With the flexibility to work from home, when not possible, the local office provides an alternative to HQ in Utrecht.

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3rd generation GRT vehicle steals the show at Intertraffic

Most-advanced-autonomous-vehicleRobbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer

“The compliments from visitors are humbling and make us proud of the product that we are bringing to the market.”

Quite the show

At the Intertraffic Exhibition in Amsterdam (20-23 March, 2018) 2getthere’s new vehicle is quite the show: most likely the vehicle is the most photographed object at the exhibition. For the 2getthere staff at the exhibition the praise of visitors of the looks and the build quality if humbling and makes us proud of the product that we are bringing to the market. The vehicle will be debuting at the Rivium and Bluewaters projects under contract as permanent applications shortly.

Rivium 3.0 Presentation

On Wednesday March 21, 2getthere jointly presented on the Rivium 3.0 project with the city of Capelle aan den IJssel. In a 30 minute presentation the speakers shared information on the parties involved and how 2getthere’s ParkShuttle will be transformed into the world’s first autonomous system operating on public roads without featuring a safety driver or steward on board. The Smart Mobility Theatre was filled to the brim, with good follow up afterwards at the booth.

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14 million passengers delivered and counting

most experience autonomous vehicle supplierRobbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer 2getthere

“The experience with day-to-day passengers is invaluable.”

Most experienced autonomous vehicle supplier

Based on the daily operations at Schiphol, Rivium, Floriade and Masdar City, 2getthere delivered over 14 million passengers to their destination to date. This excludes passengers transported as part of demonstrations and trials in France, Monaco, Germany, Singapore and the Netherlands as well as the large-scale ride system delivered in a high-profile theme park attraction in cooperation with Oceaneering.

The number of passengers delivered makes 2getthere the most experienced autonomous vehicle supplier. By a lot. At Rivium the 2nd generation GRT transit system has carried 2,500 passengers on a daily basis for the past 11 years. With the introduction of the 3rd generation and the extension towards the Waterbus, this number is expect to increase further to approximately 3,000 per day. Robbert Lohmann: ‘The gap towards other companies entering the market for Shared Autonomous Vehicles will only become larger upon the opening of the Bluewaters application. With an hourly capacity of 3,500 passengers, the system is likely to deliver in excess of 15,000 people per day to their destination. 7 days a week, 365 days per year.’

Actual Behavior versus Conscious Behavior

The real value of the experience doesn’t lie in the passenger number, but having learned from the actual behavior of passengers. Lohmann explains: ‘We have done demonstrations and delivered applications. The difference between the two is that in demonstrations, passengers are aware that this is a demonstration and exhibit ‘conscious behavior’; if there is a fault in the system they are patient, almost accepting and thankful to experience the development process. In real life, there is no patience, just anxiety about being late or missing a connection. Being able to deal with this technically, by ensuring availability and reliablity, and operationally, is what sets 2getthere apart from start-up suppliers. The experience with day-to-day passengers is invaluable.’

The experience influences design and technology choices in support of providing the required system availability and reliability. ‘Operations have to be ensured during all weather conditions – rain or shine – and in all environments, even hot and humid. That’s why we put great attention into the development of the airconditioning system in the 3rd generation GRT vehicle.’ 14 million and counting!

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Altran delivers new 3rd generation vehicle

Carel van Helsdingen, Chief Executive Officer 2getthere

“It is great to work with dedicated, proud partners.”

New Delivery

With great pride Altran celebrated the new delivery of 2getthere’s driverless vehicles, capable of operating in mixed traffic or as Automated People Mover. The vehicle was fully engineered and produced by Altran, located at the Automotive Campus in Helmond. #driverless #ZeroEmission #SmartCities

Made in Holland

The vehicle was fully engineered and produced by Altran, located at the Automotive Campus in Helmond. #driverless #ZeroEmission #SmartCities

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GRT vehicle: automated minibus

2getthere’s GRT vehicles are automated minibuses accommodating 22 passengers (8 seated, 14 standing). The maximum speed is 60km/hr and are unique as they are the only autonomous vehicles that are bi-directional and feature doors on both sides. The GRT vehicle allows for easy access through accurate docking at the stations, enabled by the ‘crabbing’ capability of the front and rear wheel steering.

Vehicle Specifications:GRT
Standard configuration:8 seats + 14 standees
Maximum seating configuration:12 seats + 6 standees
Length:6044mm
Width:2104mm
Heigth:2784mm
Floor level:410mm
Height passenger compartment:~2000mm
Wheel base:3700mm
Wheel track:1580mm
Vehicle weight:4500kg
Maximum payload:1918kg
Maximum weight:6418kg
Propulsion:Central AC motor, differential in front axle
Energy source:Li-ion nano NMC, 2x 18.4kWh
Range:up to 50km (normal operating conditions)
Recharging:11minutes (from 30% to 80%)
Maximum (cruising) speed:60km/h
Maximum acceleration:0.8m/s2
Normal deceleration:1.0m/s2
Emergency stop:3.2m/s2
Maximum/advised gradient:10%/<6%
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Rivium business park first to introduce autonomous shuttles in mixed traffic

Robbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer 2getthere

“This is a 3rd-generation system; the product of 20 years of experience with earlier generations.”

First autonomous system

In the coming years, 2getthere’s ParkShuttle in the Rotterdam region (Capelle aan den IJssel) will be transformed into the world’s first autonomous system operating on public roads without featuring a safety driver or steward on board. With the ParkShuttle, the city aims to further increase regional accessibility. It’s a world premiere for the Netherlands: no permanent autonomous system operates on public roads anywhere in the world.

The first phase of the new system will be operational by 2019. Today, the city of Capelle aan den IJssel, De Verkeersonderneming and technology supplier 2getthere signed an agreement to this end. The new system will also be the first system to meet the certification criteria for the draft legislation governing the use of self-driving vehicles in the Netherlands (Experimenteerwet zelfrijdende auto).

The ParkShuttle that runs between metro station Kralingse Zoom and business park Rivium is the first urban driverless vehicle system in the Netherlands and has been operational since 1999. In the 17 years that have passed, more than six million passengers have used the system. It has been a long-standing ambition of the city of Capelle aan den IJssel and 2getthere to renew the system and expand the route via existing public roads.

Now this ambition will become reality. 2getthere will supply six new shuttle vehicles (GRTs) with a capacity to transport 500 passengers per hour in each direction. The new GRTs will be operational on the current route in the summer of 2019. In 2020, this route will be extended towards a stop at the Van Brienenoord bridge where passengers can board the Waterbus. The route will run over public roads, amongst manually driven traffic. The Waterbus connects the ‘Drecht cities’ (Alblasserdam, Dordrecht, Hendrik-Ido-Ambacht, Papendrecht, Sliedrecht and Zwijndrecht) with Rotterdam, with the ParkShuttle providing access to the Rotterdam metro network. It is expected that the ParkShuttle will see a 20% increase in daily passenger numbers as a result of the extension.

Safe and ready for public roads

The extension of the current route is a world first. Demonstrations with stewards on board (level 3 autonomy) are conducted regularly, but there is no autonomous system operating on a public road and in mixed traffic without a steward (level 4 autonomy) anywhere in the world. Although 2getthere has global experience developing fully autonomous public transport systems, this is the first time that so many level crossings with regular traffic and pedestrians have to be configured.

According to 2getthere’s CCO Robbert Lohmann, this is now a feasible challenge due to a combination of spatial planning and the latest technological developments, ensuring optimum safety for all road users. Lohmann: ‘Bear in mind that this is a third-generation system; it is the product of 20 years of experience with earlier generations. Driving autonomously on public roads has become part of our technological road map and ties in with our vision on autonomous transportation in general. Not only the system itself is taken into account but also how autonomous transport fits into the urban environment.’

2getthere expects the Lower Chamber of the Dutch Parliament to vote in favour of the new bill on the experimental use of self-driving vehicles that will be discussed next year. Lohmann: ‘This bill determines what authorisation requirements are appropriate for fully autonomous vehicles. We are currently looking into this with the Dutch Government Road Transport Agency (RDW) to determine what is required and how to fulfil the most stringent safety requirements. This alone shows that this is truly a pioneering project.’

Investment >EUR 4 million

The new ParkShuttle requires a EUR 8.5 million investment, half of which will come from De Verkeersonderneming Rotterdam, a public-private partnership between the Municipality of Rotterdam, the Rotterdam/The Hague Metropolitan Area, the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, and Port of Rotterdam. The investment forms part of the ‘Marktplaats voor Infrastructuur’, an initiative that promotes infrastructure-related public-private partnerships. It also underlines the ambition of the Metropolitan Area to assume a leading role in the realisation of autonomous transit.

Currently the ParkShuttle carries over 2,400 passengers daily. This number will increase significantly according to Capelle aan den IJssel’s Alderman Dick van Sluis: ‘We are exploring the possibilities to extend the route to Erasmus University Rotterdam. This extension, as well as the connection to transport over water, will result in a massive increase in the amount of passengers. We are also anticipating the realisation of Rotterdam’s new stadium Feyenoord City, allowing spectators and visitors of events to travel from Rivium. The business park will be able to welcome many visitors who aren’t necessarily reliant on their car, which fits really well with our ambition to transform it into the Rivium Campus: an attractive urban environment where working, living and leisure go hand in hand.’

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When will autonomous transit be a reality? (whitepaper)

Robbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer 2getthere

“As soon as possible, we should be deploying applications that actually work in the here and now.”

Autonomous transit a reality

Large-scale introduction of driverless vehicles in modern urban traffic is an unlikely scenario for the next 10 to 15 years. This is the conclusion of a whitepaper, ‘When will autonomous transit be a reality’, published today by 2getthere, the Utrecht-based company that specializes in autonomous transit solutions. Instead of focusing solely on technology that makes cars autonomous, it would be better to work towards an urban traffic infrastructure in which a gradual development can take place from semi-autonomous vehicles to fully autonomous ones.

According to the authors of the whitepaper, Robbert Lohmann and Sjoerd van der Zwaan, 2getthere’s Chief Operations Officer and Chief Technology Officer, the world of autonomous transit is characterized by a watershed. On the one side we see the car manufacturers, who are betting heavily on technology that will enable cars to find their way without the help of a driver on the highway within just a few years. On the other side are the developers of automated systems of public transport, who connect vehicle autonomy with obstacle detection and separate lanes. Semi-autonomous systems like this are already in use with more soon to be operational, for instance in the Netherlands at the Rivium Businesspark in Capelle aan den IJssel and in Masdar City (Abu Dhabi). From 2019 Dubai will also be operating such a system connecting the Dubai subway system with Bluewaters Island, just off the Dubai coast. The Bluewaters Island APM will be a sustainable and autonomous system carrying up to 5,000 passengers per hour in each direction.

Read and download here the whitepaper: ‘When will autonomous transit be a reality?’

Autonomous transit systems

‘What we see happening is that car manufacturers and tech-companies are spending massively on marketing and organizing spectacular pilot projects in a bid to win over the public as well as the decision-makers in government’, says Lohmann. ‘However, our conclusion is that in reality, despite undeniable leaps in technology, fully autonomous cars (level 5) will not hit the road for many years – if ever.

In our whitepaper, therefore, we make a case for a paradigm shift: first start deploying automated transit systems in controlled environments (level 4), and then slowly, step by step, reduce the level of control. This will allow the technology to develop towards maturity without risking passenger safety.’

Gradual development

The strength of 2getthere’s philosophy is that society will soon be able to reap the benefits of autonomous transit without the disadvantages of the rule of the restrictive headstart. ‘Autonomous vehicles can add a significant amount of capacity to existing public transport, as they are a natural extension as feeder systems,’ says Lohmann. ‘Capelle in the Netherlands is a picture perfect example, where our Parkshuttle has for many years already been a popular “last mile” solution to get from the Kralingse Zoom subway station to Rivium Businesspark. It was recently decided to renew the existing Parkshuttle system and to expand its route to include a section of public road. This way we will be able to incrementally move towards a situation in which all forms of transportation, such as cars, bicycles, water bus, Parkshuttle and subway trains are seamlessly connected. Autonomous transit systems will soon be genuinely integrated into the transport chain.’

According to the authors, business campuses but also airfields are the perfect location for groundbreaking experiments in autonomous transit solutions. Lohmann: ‘The parameters in these locations are well known and you know which settings can be adjusted. Demonstrations of things that might be possible many years from now can be sexy, but we should be careful not to give decision-makers the wrong impression. As soon as possible, we should be deploying applications that actually work in the here and now, and on the basis of our experience introduce new generation after new generation. We predict that this will be a faster route towards autonomous transportation.’

Read and download also the whitepaper (July 2017): ‘Automation and Smart Cities: Opportunity or threat?’

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2getthere successfully completes extreme weather climate test

Robbert Lohmann, Chief Commercial Officer 2getthere

“The successful climate test shows the attention to details; the GRT is easily the best and most sophisticated shared autonomous vehicle available.”

Successful climate test

2getthere’s newly developed prototype of a Group Rapid Transit (GRT) autonomous vehicle a succeful climate test in simulated desert climate conditions. It was subject to three tests in weather conditions such as ‘hot dry’ and ‘hot humid’, with a focus on the performance of the air conditioning system at the vehicles’ maximum (24) passenger capacity. The test results show that the battery-powered vehicles are able to maintain an indoor temperature of 23˚C even in the worst-case scenario (52˚C outside temperature and 3% humidity). The extreme climate test is one in a long line of tests.

The simulated weather conditions during the test included extremely high temperatures and sun radiation. Both are common in Dubai, with average peaks in sun radiation of 1,040 Watts per square metre around noon and peaks in temperature of 52˚C around 3.30pm. In the climatic chamber, both peaks were simulated at the same time, the most extreme scenario and one that is highly unlikely to ever become reality.

The passengers (16 standing passengers representing 120 Watts each and eight seated passengers each representing 100 Watts) were simulated by placing a 3000-Watt heat source inside the vehicle. A vital part of the test focused on performance during transition: the speed at which indoor conditions are brought back to the most comfortable level for passengers after the doors close and the vehicle starts its journey. The most extreme situation tested was based on the vehicle standing still with the doors opened for six minutes. In actual circumstances much shorter stops will suffice to allow 24 passengers to enter the vehicle and find their places. Moreover, these stops will normally happen at an air-conditioned station environment.

Performance exceeds specifications

The air conditioning system for the new generation GRT was developed in close collaboration with suppliers DC Airco and NLR (Netherlands Aerospace Centre). NLR has used the simulation of heat management in relation to airflow within the vehicle in its design of the air conditioning. The results of the climatic chamber test exceed all expectations based on 2getthere’s specifications. The development of the air conditioning system was partly financed with an MIT research grant from Utrecht province in which DC Airco and 2getthere have participated together.

According to 2getthere the successful climate test marks yet another step towards the operational deployment of the system in extreme climates.

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Prototype 3rd generation autonomous vehicles on the move

Prototype-shippingRobbert Lohmann, Chief Operations Officer, 2getthere

“The GRT is sure to impress with its looks, technology and performance. It is simply the most mature autonomous vehicle available.”

Prototype Driverless Vehicle

Today a special flight departed from Schiphol Airport to Asia. Dutch technology firm 2getthere placed a newly developed prototype driverless vehicle vehicle (GRT) on transport to Singapore. The prototype driverless vehicle carries passengers autonomously, without the intervention of a driver or steward. In the future, the vehicle will also serve Bluewaters Island in Dubai and Rivium business park in the Netherlands.

The Netherlands is ensuring it is the focus of attention with regards to autonomous vehicles internationally. The GRT vehicle is a creation of the Utrecht technology firm 2getthere, specializing in the development of solutions in the field of autonomous transport. The third generation vehicle will be used for demonstrations at various locations in Singapore, including the Kim Chuan Depot (KCD) and Nanyang Technical University. This is done on behalf of 2getthere Asia, a joint venture between 2getthere and Singapore’s public transport company SMRT, also a shareholder of the Dutch company.

The new GRT is designed by the renowned automotive designer Zagato from Milan (known for unique car designs for Abarth, Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Ferrari and Aston Martin). With a length of 6 meters, width of 2.1 meters and height of 2.8 meters, the GRT accommodates up to 24. The vehicle is based on the latest technological developments, with the battery for example charging from 30% to 80% in just 10 minutes.

World First

The new GRT is intended to be deployed in Dubai in the future, where 2getthere has obtained a large contract for autonomous public transport to Bluewaters Island.

In addition, the vehicle will also be driving in the Netherlands: 2getthere is also the company behind the Parkshuttle in Capelle aan den IJssel. This cooperation was extended earlier this year, with the deployment of the new GRT featuring a world first for 2getthere and the municipality of Capelle: the first fully autonomous system on the public road, in permanent operation and without steward.

Autonomous transport solutions based on technology and systems developed by 2getthere are cost-effective, in addition to environmentally friendly. Compared with traditional rail-based solutions, savings can be made of 50% on infrastructure and maintenance. For this reason, self-propelled transportation systems are very suitable for medium-sized airports, business campuses (up to 50,000 employees) and entertainment parks.

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2getthere awarded largest autonomous shuttle project for Bluewaters Island

Bluewaters-contract-awardCarel van Helsdingen, Chief Executive Officer, 2getthere

“The Bluewaters contract award demonstrates the capability of 2getthere’s systems to provide significant capacities.”

Bluewaters Contract Award

Dutch technology firm 2getthere, a world-leading developer of sustainable mobility solutions, has been awarded the contract to deliver a new automated vehicle system in Dubai that will link new waterfront lifestyle destination Bluewaters with the city’s network of metro stations. The innovative new transport system will have a capacity of 5,000 people per hour per direction, with the automated vehicle connection between Bluewaters and the metro set to become the largest of its kind in the world and is considered an example of the future of autonomous transport solutions.

Home to Ain Dubai, the world’s tallest and largest observation wheel in the world, Bluewaters is a destination under construction 500 metres (1,600 ft) off the Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) coastline, opposite The Beach and near Dubai Marina, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The island is a colourful beacon adorning the city’s spectacular coastline and skyline, with a collection of townhouses, penthouses and apartments; retail and dining experiences and two hotels, linked to the shore by a multi-modal transport system ensuring easy access to the island.

The centerpiece at Bluewaters will be Ain Dubai, the tallest and largest observation wheel that will be taller than the 167.6 m (550 ft) High Roller that opened in Las Vegas in March 2014. It will also be 19.5 m (64 ft) taller than the 190.5 m (625 ft) New York Wheel planned for Staten Island. When completed, Ain Dubai will be able to carry up to 1,400 passengers in its 48 capsules, and provide views of Dubai Marina and landmarks such as Burj Al Arab, Palm Jumeirah, and Burj Khalifa. Its base will also serve as an exciting entertainment zone.

The awarded automatic transport system fits Dubai’s objective to have 25% of all trips completed by automated systems by 2035. The automated transport system at Bluewaters will feature 25 driverless Group Rapid Transit (GRT) vehicles capable of carrying 24 passengers each, connecting stations on the island and Nakheel Harbour and Tower Metro Station approximately 2.5 kilometers apart. The capacity will initially be 3,350 people per hour per direction, with the possibility to increase to 5,000 people per hour per direction. The trip time will be approximately 4.5 minutes.

The application is also the first to feature a 2getthere’s 3rd generation GRT vehicle. This automated vehicle can serve in Automated People Mover applications as well as an autonomous transit system on public roads, integrating the necessary sensory technology.

Excellent track record

2getthere CEO Carel van Helsdingen: “We believed from the start that our system and technology provided the best fit for the application. It is rewarding to be under contract. The award of the project clearly shows the increased interest in 2getthere’s systems throughout the Middle East. This is based to a large extent on our excellent track record in Masdar City and Capelle aan den IJssel in the Netherlands, where we operate comparable systems with a high availability and reliability in harsh climate conditions”.
2getthere will realize the project through its Middle East Joint Venture with United Technical Services. According to 2getthere Middle East and United Technical Services COO Ziad Al Askari, the solution provided for the connection to Bluewaters is a perfect fit with the Autonomous Transport Strategy as a pillar to achieve a sustainable economy for the UAE. Al Askari: “His Highness Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, recently launched an strategy for smart self-driving transport as part of Dubai’s strategy to become the smartest city in the world. By 2030, 25 per cent of all transportation trips in Dubai will be smart and driverless. As such we are proud to contribute to this ambitious goal.”

Logistical paradigm shift

Van Helsdingen is convinced the automated vehicles will have a great appeal and will encourage more people to visit Bluewaters by public transit. He also sees new opportunities: “The Bluewaters application demonstrates the capability of 2getthere’s systems to provide significant capacities, making them a financially attractive alternative for the expensive, traditional rail-guided APM systems at airports and campuses. Basically we are applying Level 4 autonomous vehicles on a dedicated track to provide a high capacity and throughput. We are working on introducing these vehicles in mixed traffic, similar to the extension of the Rivium application in the city of Capelle aan den IJssel (the Netherlands) just announced two weeks ago.”

In that respect, 2getthere expects a logistical paradigm shift in the coming years. “On one hand, it is led by metropolitan policy makers in the Middle East and Asia in search of smart city solutions. On the other hand it will increasingly driven by the technology and automotive sector in de US (e.g. in Sillicon Valley and Detroit) responding to the call for cost-effective and environmental friendly last mile solutions. The latter ones connect medium-sized airports to city centers and convert corporate campuses, that are hosting 10,000 people or more, into smart cities.

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2getthere hosts Insights in driverless transit ahead of Podcar conference

Carel van Helsdingen, Chief Executive Officer, 2getthere

[quote]“The lessons learned from the application at business park Rivium are the basis for the Masdar application and the 3rd generation GRT vehicle.”[/quote]

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Morning Program

The development of self driving vehicles is growing tremendously. What is the impact of automated vehicles in public transport? How can we prepare the city for these self driving vehicles and specifically for public transport? What do you need to know to properly advice your customers which laws, standards and regulations to apply?

Preceeding InnoTrans in Berlin and PodcarCity in Antwerp, we would like to invite you to ‘Insights in driverless transit’ on the 19th of September in Capelle aan den IJssel in the Netherlands. The program consists of speakers from MRDH, SMRT, Ricardo Rail and 2getthere.

09:30              Welcome
09:45              Introduction by Dennis Mica, 2getthere

10:00              Presentation by Gert de Visser, MRDH
                         ‘Insights in process of selection and introduction’

10:30              Presentation by Jan Scheepers, Ricardo Rail
                        ‘Insights in safety certification’

11:00              Presentation by Mark Ng, SMRT
                        ‘Insights in operations of last mile solutions’ 

11:30              Presentation by Jean-Luc Valk, 2getthere
                        ‘Insights in the 3rd generation GRT system’                   

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Afternoon Program

In the afternoon a reference visit to the ParkShuttle is organized as part of the Podcar Conference, hosted in the city of Antwerp on September 20 and 21. As an introduction the parties involved in the realization will talk about the experiences from their perspective.

13:00              Presentation by Dick van Sluis, Capelle a/d IJssel
                        ‘Lessons learned by the city’

13:20              Presentation by Peter Krumm, Connexxion
                        ‘Lessons learned by the operator’

13:40              Presentation by Carel van Helsdingen, 2getthere
                        ‘Lessons learned by the supplier’

After conclusion of the last presentation we will spilt up into groups of 20 people for an on-site visit to the Rivium application. It is still the only automated system in the world that operates at grade, without stewards and has crossings with other traffic.

Please feel free to share this invitation with your colleagues or other consultants in your network that like to learn more about automated vehicle systems. The conference on the 19th of September is free of charge.

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2getthere Asia Joint Venture established in Singapore

2getthere-Asia-joint-ventureColin Lim, Managing Director, SMRT Services

[quote]“There is a growing national push to implement future mobility solutions in Singapore.”[/quote]
 
 
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2getthere Asia

SMRT Services Pte. Ltd. (SMRT Services) and 2 Getthere Holding B.V. (2getthere) today announced a Joint Venture (JV) to market, supply and operate 2getthere’s Automated Vehicle systems in the Asia-Pacific region. In anticipation of the growing demand in the Asia-Pacific region for Automated Vehicles, SMRT Services and 2getthere are also working to deepen our strategic relationship with the view to better support the latter’s development and growth.

The agreement was jointly announced by Colin Lim, Managing Director, SMRT Services, and Carel van Helsdingen, Chairman and founder of 2getthere. A replica of the Automated Vehicle was unveiled in the presence of Jacques Werner, Dutch Ambassador to Singapore, and Desmond Kuek, President and Group Chief Executive Officer, SMRT Corporation Ltd.

The new Singapore-based JV, called 2getthere Asia Pte Ltd, will jointly market, install, operate and maintain the Automated Vehicle systems for customers in Singapore and the Asia-Pacific. The JV aims to showcase 2getthere’s 3rd Generation Group Rapid Transit (GRT) vehicle capabilities in Singapore by the end of the year. This showcase will highlight the vehicle’s enhanced and new features.

2getthere’s vehicles are unique in being able to operate autonomously in demanding weather conditions, using artificial landmarks for navigation. The 3rd generation GRT vehicles are able to carry up to 24 passengers each, and can operate as a low-cost automated transit system that can cater for up to 8,000 passengers per hour in any single direction.

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Additionally, 2getthere is also incrementally shifting to mixed-use traffic operations through active participation in several research programmes worldwide. 2getthere Asia will pursue both automated and mixed-use transit projects in Singapore and the region.

Carel van Helsdingen said, “We are delighted to join forces with SMRT Services to further market 2getthere’s proven systems in the Asia-Pacific region, a high-growth sector for innovative transport technologies in the coming years. Building on decades of technological development and experience gathered through projects implemented worldwide, our innovative technology will be able to optimise the efficiency, reliability and safety of transport networks.”

Colin Lim said, “There is a growing national push to implement future mobility solutions that can meet our first and last-mile connectivity needs in Singapore. As part of the JV, SMRT Services will leverage on our experience in installation, operations and maintenance of transit systems to realise these solutions locally. The Automated Vehicles will complement our existing multi-modal transport operations to bring about seamless connectivity for commuters”.

The signing of this agreement establishes 2getthere Asia as a strong regional player in the automated vehicles industry. For SMRT Services, this partnership forms part of its larger strategy to widen its transport capabilities through investments in innovative technologies.

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2getthere presents at Eco-Mobility Conference, Kaohsiung

Eco-Mobility-ConferenceRobbert Lohmann, Chief Operations Officer, 2getthere

[quote]“Our systems are electrically driven and build to last, improving sustainability and liveability of cities.”[/quote]

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Ecomobility Conference

On September 24 Land Network and 2getthere presented at the 2015 Ecomobility Conference in Kaohsiung (Taiwan) sponsored by the Netherlands Trade and Innovation Office. The session included presentations from Ford, BASF and Blue Solutions (part of the French Bollore Group) and 2getthere. Obviously the local activities of 2getthere in Hsinchu attracted significant attention, resulting in a radio interview with  Taiwan’s only English radio channel ICRT.
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The presentation led to several direct contact with other local governments, which will be followed up by 2getthere’s agent Land Network. In one case the local government will visit with 2getthere in the Netherlands short term.

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Strategic Cooperation Agreement with SLTN extended

Eugene Tuijnman, Chief Executive Officer, SLTN Inter Access

[quote]”Working closely together with 2getthere, we see the growing global demand for this unique solution.”[/quote]

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Strategic Cooperation

Eugene Tuijnman, CEO of SLTN Inter Access and Carel van Helsdingen, CEO of 2getthere, reconfirmed their strategic cooperation agreement 5 years after the initial agreement. The cooperation concerns the realization of 2getthere’s innovative automated people mover systems, with SLTN Inter Access designing and providing the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) network.

The cooperation between SLTN Inter Access and 2getthere dates back to 2008, when the companies originally contracted for the design, realization and support of the ICT system for the Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) application at Masdar City in Abu Dhabi. 2getthere’s driverless systems are the first automated people movers operating on a flat road bed without any physical guidance (rail). Although they resemble autonomous cars closely, and even share technology, the systems (for now) still operate on a dedicated track to ensure throughput can be maintained. Thus far more than 1.4 million people have been transported using this PRT system.

Eugene Tuijnman: ‘Working closely together with 2getthere, we see the growing global demand for this unique solution. With our expertise in information and communication technology, our knowledge and expertise in supplying state-of-the-art and moreover very secure and reliable ICT systems, we know we make an important contribution to the systems realized by 2getthere.’
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Prospects on the horizon

The PRT system at Masdar achieves an up-time (system availability) of 99.96%,since 2008 up to now, underlining the stability of the system and related ICT infrastructure and design. From the perspective of 2getthere the continued cooperation was a logical step, indicates Carel van Helsdingen: ‘From the state-of-art ICT design and support during realization of the Masdar project to the responsiveness during operations, the cooperation with SLTN has been successful. Both parties speak the same language and know what to expect from each other, allowing us to concentrate on the project realization and getting the job done.’

At the signing of the reconfirmed cooperation, Eugene Tuijnman and Carel van Helsdingen expressed looking forward to a long and prosperous relationship for both companies. ‘There are several exciting global projects on the horizon and we look forward to signing contracts for them short term and delivering this innovative solution.’, indicated Carel van Helsdingen. The new GRT vehicle has been offered for applications in Asia, the Middle East and Europe. Reactions from the market with regards to both the design and the capabilities have been very positive.

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Enthusiastic prime minister Modi of India visits Masdar

[one_half]On August 17th India PM (Prime Minister) Modi visited Masdar City in Abu Dhabi, kicking off the visit by riding the PRT system supplied by 2getthere.

For purpose of the visit the service of the PRT system had been reserved exclusively for the large delegation travelling with the Prime Minister. As the Prime Minister left the station, journalists where seen rushing through the station to use one of the other vehicles available at the berths. In their pursuit of not missing a single minute of the visit, the floor of the vehicles was creatively used for additional seats as standing is not possible. With the payload of the vehicles not being exceeded, the control room operators decided to allow the transit to proceed although monitoring the passengers continuously over the CCTV system.
 
 
 
 

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NDTV.com reported that ‘The highlight of the PM’s tour was a demo ride in a self-driving car, part of Masdar city’s Private Rapid Transit or PRT. The car runs on lithium batteries powered by solar energy and uses a virtual software to guide its journey. An enthusiastic crowd of Indians gathered in Masdar to watch the PM’s ride; PM Modi was seen waving at the crowd.’ Link: http://www.ndtv.com/india-news/pm-modi-rides-self-driving-car-in-masdar-worlds-first-zero-carbon-city-1208011.

The Prime Minister himself tweeted on his experience, sharing some photos in the process (https://twitter.com/PMOIndia/status/633138811728478208). The message was retweeted nearly 500 times and favorited over 900 times. At the same time UAE news outlets also reported extensively on the visit: http://www.thenational.ae/uae/government/modi-in-uae-indian-pm-takes-a-tour-of-masdar-city.

2getthere continuous to be honored by being able to transport the dignitaries visiting Masdar City with our PRT system.

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2getthere partners with Benteler for the engineering of the 3rd generation GRT

[one_half] BENTELER Engineering Services, reliable engineering partner for the complete product life cycle, and 2getthere, developer of innovative transit systems, strengthen their partnership for the development of 2getthere’s automated people mover applications. Over the past few months the companies have already been working together on the engineering of the 3rd generation Group Rapid Transit (GRT) vehicle.

The 3rd generation GRT system will feature all-wheel steering, allowing for even better control of the vehicle and shorter radii in addition to being able to ‘crab’ (drive sideways) at stations. Hence the space required for docking at berths is reduced, with new configuration options becoming feasible. The all wheel steering allows creating a completely bi-directional vehicle. This avoids a turning loop being required in an application with a linear configuration (pinched loop) to reverse direction and optimizes the footprint of the system. With the system being capable of 5,000 passengers per hour per direction, it is an affordable alternative to the heavier Automated People Mover systems. Along with the bi-directional capability of the GRT vehicle, 2getthere introduces doors on both sides of the vehicle and the ability to operate at a higher maximum speed – with the design requirement being at 60km/h or higher. BENTELER Engineering Services will be responsible for the engineering of both the chassis and the body of the GRT vehicle, with the IP of the work being owned by 2getthere.

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BENTELER Engineering Services has already worked with 2getthere for the assembly of the Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) vehicles operational at Masdar City. With engineering experience in the automotive industry and its capability to realize small series production of vehicles, BENTELER Engineering Services is complementary to the application-, system- and software expertise gathered in 2getthere. Carel van Helsdingen, CEO of 2getthere: ‘With the market for automated systems seeing a rapid growth in the number of interested projects, we were looking for a partner that brings automotive knowledge, German workmanship and Dutch entrepreneurship to the table. We believe the combination of these qualities is represented in BENTELER Engineering Services.’

The new GRT vehicle has been offered for applications in Asia, the Middle East and Europe, drawing excellent reviews from potential customers both on the design and its capabilities.

For more information on BENTELER Engineering Services, please refer to www.benteler-engineering.de

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All aboard the 3rd generation GRT autonomous vehicle

[one_half]2getthere continues to lead the Automated Transit Networks industry with several major innovations being introduced in the 3rd generation Group Rapid Transit (GRT) system. The changes result directly from the experiences gathered with the existing Rivium system (the Netherlands) and the Personal Rapid Transit application at Masdar City (Abu Dhabi).

The 3rd generation GRT system will feature all-wheel steering, allowing for even better control of the vehicle and shorter radii in addition to being able to ‘crab’ (drive sideways) at stations. Hence the space required for docking at berths is reduced, with new configuration options becoming feasible. 2getthere CEO Carel van Helsdingen: ‘The all-wheel steering configuration is not new to us, but it is new to our people movers. It provides us another degree of freedom when designing the application based on the customer requirements’.

‘In addition the innovation now provides us with the ability to create a completely bi-directional vehicle. This avoids a turning loop being required in an application with a linear configuration (pinched loop) to reverse direction and optimizes the footprint of the system. With the system being capable of 5,000 passengers per hour per direction, it is an affordable alternative to the heavier Automated People Mover systems’. Along with the bi-directional capability of the GRT vehicle, 2getthere introduces doors on both sides of the vehicle and the ability to operate at a higher maximum speed – with the design requirement being at 60km/h or higher.[/one_half]

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The GRT vehicle will also feature a 400V electric system, rather than the 96V electric system featured in the 2nd generation. This is in line with the systems applied in electric cars, allowing to benefit from the components being developed for such. 2getthere is also planning on using the latest battery technology. It has shown a much better efficiency ensuring vehicles remain available without recharging for a prolonged period of time, while also increasing the battery life.‘We really want to raise the bar and continue to lead in the Automated Transit Networks industry. We are convinced that these innovations will position the GRT vehicle as the preferred system of choice for many applications, especially applications requiring up to 2,500pphpd,’ states Van Helsdingen.

The release of the design specifications comes with the development of the third generation Group Rapid Transit system having commenced earlier this year. In January the design of the new vehicle, realized in close cooperation with the renowned Italian automotive design company Zagato Milano, was already released.
The new GRT vehicle has been offered for applications in Asia, the Middle East and Europe, drawing excellent reviews from potential customers both on the design and its capabilities.

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ATRA webinar: where is automated transportation going next (June 17, 2015)

[quote]Please join the webinar organized by the Advanced Transit Association Industry Group (ATRA IG) on June 17 at 1500 GMT (1000a EDT).[/quote]

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The Webinar is entitled ‘Where is autonomous transit going next?’ and will address where advanced transit systems such as personal rapid transit (PRT) and group rapid transit (GRT) are going. It will cover potential transport demand for ATNs as well as expected technology and strategy developments. The featured speakers represent the University of Bologna and LogistikCentrum. [/one_half]

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The webinar will last approximately 40 minutes after which there will be opportunity to ask questions to the speakers and members of the ATRA Industry Group. There is no need to register; you can access the webinar via the link below. As the room accommodates 100 attendees only, please be sure to join on time! You can participate under your name or an alias if you desire to remain anonymous.

https://webmeeting.umd.edu/atraigwebinar/

This webinar is the third in a series of three webinars. The first two webinars can be viewed on http://www.advancedtransit.org/library/videos/

 

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ATRA Webinar: where are automated transit networks now (May 20, 2015)

[one_half] Date: May 20th at 15.00pm UTC/GMT

The webinar will address where advanced transit systems such as personal rapid transit (PRT) and group rapid transit (GRT) are now. Ranging from the proven applications in operation for several years (Rivium, Masdar City and Heathrow) to the test tracks (Modutram) and the planned applications (Hsinchu City) and technology developments. Featured expert speakers represent 2getthere, Modutram and ULTra PRT.
 
 
 
 
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The webinar will last approximately 40 minutes after which there will be opportunity to ask questions to the speakers and members of the ATRA Industry Group. There is no need to register; you can access the webinar via the link below. As the room accommodates 100 attendees only, please be sure to join on time! You can participate under your name or an alias if you desire to remain anonymous.

webmeeting.umd.edu/atraigwebinar

This webinar is the second in a series of three webinars, with the final webinar scheduled for June 17th: “Where is autonomous transit going next?” The first webinar can be viewed on www.advancedtransit.org/library/videos

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ATRA Webinar: what to plan for when planning for automated transit networks (April 22, 2015)

[quote]What to plan for when planning for Automated Transit Networks
Date: April 22nd at 15.00pm UTC/GMT [/quote]

[one_half] The webinar is to discuss the key aspects of assessing whether advanced transit systems such as personal rapid transit (PRT) and group rapid transit (GRT) are a fit with the application’s requirements and characteristics. Featured expert speakers represent ARUP, Lea+Elliott and PRT Consulting.

The webinar will last approximately 40 minutes after which there will be opportunity to ask questions to the speakers and members of the ATRA Industry Group.

During the session we will be covering topics such as:

  • Where to start with the assessment? What information is required to start evaluating the potential project?
  • What capacity can ATN realistically provide? Can they handle surge loads?
  • What is required in terms of right-of-way? How can they be integrated into an existing urban environment [/one_half]

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You can register for the webinar via the link below. As the room accommodates 100 attendees only, please be sure to join on time! You can participate under your name or an alias if you desire to remain anonymous.

https://webmeeting.umd.edu/atraigwebinar/

This webinar is the first in a series of three webinars.

The other webinars in this series are:

May 20th: ”Where are Automated Transit Networks now?”
June 17th: “Where is autonomous transit going next?”

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Memorandum of Understanding signed for GRT system in Hsinchu, Taiwan

[one_half]2getthere and Hsin-Chu Seamless Joint Co., Ltd. (Hsin-Jie) signed a Memorandum of Understanding on January 30th in regard to the realization of the Hsinchu GRT connection.

The MOU is a next step towards the realization of the connection between the local rail stations, Tsing Hha University and Hsinchu Science Park.

The system features 11 stations and will be able to handle 4,800 passengers per hour. To ensure the highest service levels to passengers, four different service lines are defined, with frequencies ranging from 1.5 to 3.5 minutes. The main locations within the system are served by an express line ensuring the shortest possible travel time.

HsinchuGRTlayoutHsin-Jie is engaged in managing, financing, realizing and operating of the PRT/GRT Project in Hsinchu, Taiwan. CEO Chia Feng Shih commented: ‘There is a very clear need for a feeder system in this area of Hsinchu. As Hsin-Jie we are eager to realize the system and contribute to the accessibility of the city and the improvement of local mobility. The system will allow passengers to get to their destination efficiently, reducing the congestion on local roads and improving the living environment in the process.’ [/one_half]

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On behalf of 2getthere the MOU was signed by its CEO Carel van Helsdingen. He indicated: ‘The MOU is an important step towards the realization of the system. Our local representative, Land Network, and we have co-operated closely to get to this stage, but by no means can we consider the work complete now. We will continue working together with the local authorities, Hsin-Jie and other contractors towards the final contract, allowing us to start with the actual realization of this service to the local residents, employees and visitors of Hsinchu.’

2getthere will deploy its 3rd generation GRT vehicle for the application. The vehicle features an iconic design, accommodating up to 25 passengers. The vehicles feature air-conditioning and automated doors with a wide opening to accommodate wheelchairs. The GRT will be fully electrical. The vehicles are completely driverless and automatically guided by 2getthere’s proven magnet based navigation system. The maximum speed will be 40 km/hr.

To achieve the required capacity of 4,800 passengers per hour and the realization of the system and the service level to passengers, a fleet size of 55 GRT vehicles is required.

HsinchuConference

The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding preceded a symposium with various presentations from contributors to the Hsinchu GRT connection. Carel van Helsdingen presented on behalf of 2getthere.

Also see the report on the site of Hsinchu County Government.

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2getthere participating in the iMobility Challenge

[one_half]On September 11th 2getthere participated in the iMobility Challenge at the Valkenburg airstrip in the Netherlands. With the motto “intelligent mobility for Smart Cities” and the vision to demonstrate how European cities can be provided with smart, energy-efficient, low-pollution and safe transport systems, this event was a high-level technology demonstration day.

2getthere CEO Carel van Helsdingen showed FIA President Jean Todt the future of mobility: Personal Rapid Transit. The mock-up model of the Masdar Podcar was on display to visitors, allowing them to experience how spacious the vehicle is. [/one_half]

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Organised with the assistance of the Royal Dutch Touring Club (ANWB), attendees included the world’s leading motoring organisations, leading mobility experts, universities, industry CEOs and international and national policy makers as well as other dignitaries, and the Media. Formula one star Nico Rosberg with Dutch racing drivers Giedo van der Garde, Robin Frijns and Kevin Abbring were also present to endorse intelligent mobility and demonstrate the high performance capabilities of electric vehicles.

Participants had a chance to take the driver’s seat and experience a diverse variety of technologies, systems, services & actual deployment examples in the field of intelligent mobility.

In particular the event was divived into four areas: efficient, cooperative, smart and safe mobility.

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[one_half] As a result of the publicity for the system and the operations at Masdar City and Rivium, more and more people world wide are getting interested in the concept of Personal Rapid Transit. The mode is seen as a way to increase the catchment area’s of stations and function as a feeder system. PRT can also accomodate moderate up to medium passenger flows as a local circulator system at airports, universities and company estates.

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Land Network from Taiwan recognized the possibilities of PRT and has the desire to introduce the concept in Taiwan. After careful research and a visit to the Masdar application, Land Network decided on moving forward with 2getthere. As of June 1st 2011 Land Network is the authorized agent for 2getthere for Taiwan.

In addition to the PRT system, Land Network will also be marketing 2getthere’s GRT system in Taiwan.

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[one_half] This international seminar aims to raise awareness of innovative public transport, specifically Personal and Group Rapid Transit. It will disseminate the results of Daventry’s involvement in the NICHES+ (EC) project and promote the position of Daventry as the site for a pilot implementation in the UK.
 
 
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Hosted by Daventry District Council in its designation as a NICHES+ ‘Champion City’, this one-day seminar will feature leading professionals in UK and European Transport Policy as well as Personal Rapid Transit and Group Rapid Transit.

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Driverless buses in mixed traffic (2003-2004)


Driverless Buses in mixed traffic

To introduce the newly developed 2nd generation GRT vehicle, 2getthere demonstrated the vehicle during the Electric Vehicle exhibition in Monte Carlo (EVMC) in 2003. Located in the port, a small lap was created within the site of the exhibition, where the driverless vehicle used the same street as the Formula 1 cars. With the vehicle operating amongst the visitors of the exhibition, it had a steward on-board to intervene when necessary. The most prominent passenger was Prince Albert, who officially opened the exhibition.

CyberCars in Antibes

In 2004 the city of Antibes hosted the closing conference of the CyberCars and CyberMove EU-research programs on driverless vehicles. Leading up to the conference, the 2nd generation GRT provided a demonstration on the Avenue du Verdun in the port of Antibes during two weeks. The road was closed to car traffic, with pedestrians and bikes able to intersect at any point along the track. All local schools visited the driverless vehicles, with a high speed test and emergency braking demonstrated during the conference.

Driverless vehicles in Delft and Utrecht

On the streets of Delft a demonstration was provided later that year to interest potential students in technical studies. Interacting with bikes on the streets along the canals, the steward never had to intervene despite the intensive bike traffic. A similar demonstration was organized in 2005, although mixing with car traffic, during the opening of the Hessing showroom in Utrecht. The driverless vehicles provided transportation towards the exclusive car dealership located in the sound barrier along the A2.

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