Iveco completes autonomous bus test
This comes after successful testing as part of the multi-partner STAR (Rapid Autonomous Transport System). The bus has proven feasible for autonomous operations in bus rapid transit (BRT) lanes as well as on private sites.
EasyMile and Iveco Bus, together with Sector, Transpolis, ISAE-SUPAERO, Université Gustave Eiffel, Inria, and Michelin joined forces to develop the technology to automate the bus in 2017 as part of the Rapid Autonomous Transport System (STAR) project. The collaboration’s aim was to develop the first driverless, autonomous standard bus, capable of operating under conditions similar to real operation, with a prototype ready in 2021.
The EasyMile and Iveco Bus jointly-developed vehicle has undergone extensive testing and development at the Transpolis proving grounds as well as Iveco Bus and EasyMile’s own test sites. It has driven in different seasons and weather conditions.
With a length of 12 metres, the bus can carry up to 100 passengers. Technologies integrated within the bus includes safety controls, navigation software and deployment processes. EasyMile contributes a fleet management solutions.
Its autonomous driving system (ADS) embedded in the vehicle enables it to consistently dock within 10cm of the kerb at stations. Maximum speeds reached by the bus in autonomous mode demonstrated that the technology also performs well at 40km/h. Vehicle to infrastructure (V2X) capabilities allow the bus to anticipate traffic-light phases, meaning smooth stopping and starting as well as lower energy consumption. Manoeuvre and stopping precision also enable automatic parking in the depot.
“As a manufacturer that has a long-standing commitment to the development of driver assistance systems, Iveco Bus is proud of the results of this level four autonomous bus project” – Stéphane Espinasse, Iveco Bus Brand President
Stéphane Espinasse, Iveco Bus Brand President, said: “As a manufacturer that has a long-standing commitment to the development of driver assistance systems, Iveco Bus is proud of the results of this level four autonomous bus project. The tests carried out validate, among other things, a speed of 40 km/h. They are a further and necessary, but not final, stage of the project that we will continue to progress with our partners. The vehicle’s safety and management features now allow us to plan the next stage, namely, tests under operating conditions.”
The project partners are now preparing for the next step set for the second half of the year: to operate the bus in a city under real conditions.
The development is subsidised by the French government.