The city of La Rochelle in France has just hosted, in the context of the EU experiment “Citymobil 2″, a fleat of fully automated and electric vehicles with the aim of transporting city passengers and of checking the ” social acceptability” of the project. 14.661 journeys were counted on board of six minibuses operated without drivers during a period of over 4 months in La Rochelle (France). 100% Electric (EVs), these vehicules are 5 m long and 1.5 m wide and can carry up to 10 people. Their speed in public areas may not exceed 15 km/h and has even been reduced to 8 km/h in order to avoid incidents in this seaside touristic town. There were however no collisions/accidents during the test period!
These automated buses, built by the French manufacturer Robosoft, are connected to monitoring systems and are equipped with an advanced GPS system as well as a laser mapping system for localisation and movement control. To detect obstacles at front and on the side (bicycles, walkers, starting cars …), laser and ultrasound devices are used.
Read more (Article and Video in French from “Actu Environnement”) at:
With thanks to Pr Jean Englebert for submitting/introducing this article/project.