- Title: Researchers in Singapore trial self-driving mobility scooter
- Date: 22nd November 2016
- Summary: SINGAPORE (NOVEMBER 17, 2016) (REUTERS) ****WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** PROJECT LEADER, NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SINGAPORE ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR MARCELO ANG JR. VIEW FROM SELF-DRIVING MOBILITY SCOOTER VARIOUS OF MOBILITY SCOOTER MOVING PAST MOBILITY SCOOTER MOVING/ PERSON STEPPING IN FRONT OF IT VIEW FROM MOBILITY SCOOTER AS THE PERSON STEPS AWAY AND IT MOVES AGAIN ANG ON MOBILITY SCOOTER SCREEN WHEELS MOVING (SOUNDBITE) (English) PROJECT LEADER, NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SINGAPORE ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR MARCELO ANG JR. SAYING: "Sure yeah, it may, but it gives them choices. For people who want to do that, who want to walk, why not walk? But if you are in a hurry, or if you want to do other things, so while you're walking you can check your emails, you can do other things, it makes it better. I'm sure you have experienced people who just use their handphone while walking, and almost running into you, these things, so it would be nice if you are just sitting down and checking your emails, doing something - your choice. We just give you more choices." ANG SPEAKING (SOUNDBITE) (English) PROJECT LEADER, NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SINGAPORE ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR MARCELO ANG JR. SAYING: "We are still improving the technology so next time when you see it, it won't take so long before moving, it would be even better than a human. So people won't ask anymore, that 'I can still be faster', but with more advances in technology, in algorithms, the AI (artificial intelligence), this should be able to exceed human capabilities, navigating in crowded places, so we're looking at having a safer way than our humans. Humans can still bump into you right? But this won't bump into you." VARIOUS OF ANG RIDING MOBILITY SCOOTER MOBILITY SCOOTER COMING TO A STOP/ ANG GETTING OFF ANG WALKING TO BUS STOP VARIOUS OF STUDENT KEVIN XIANGYU HUI TESTING OUT NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SINGAPORE HUI ON NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SINGAPORE COMING TO A STOP WHEELS MOVING HUI MOVING AWAY VARIOUS OF HUI MOVING ON MOBILITY SCOOTER HUI MOVING INTO CROWD ON MOBILITY SCOOTER MOBILITY SCOOTER TURNING A CORNER (SOUNDBITE) (English) STUDENT KEVIN XIANGYU HUI SAYING: "This is really really cool. It's something more than what I expected. I've heard something about this and I've not seen this in my life, so today I tried this, it is really awesome. It goes really smoothly and travels very safely, so when you sit on this machine, you'd feel really relaxed and it's really great." VARIOUS OF MOBILITY SCOOTER MOVING WHEELS OTHER AUTONOMOUS VEHICLES LOGO READING (English): "SMART" SEAT IN GOLF CART
- Embargoed: 7th December 2016 10:49
- Keywords: National University of Singapore NUS mobility scooter Massachusetts Institute of Technology MIT self-driving
- Location: SINGAPORE
- City: SINGAPORE
- Country: Singapore
- Topics: Science
- Reuters ID: LVA00159IXHEJ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Researchers in Singapore have come up with a solution to curb accidents involving phone-obsessed walkers, a self-driving mobility scooter that drives single pedestrians along footpaths.
The one-seater, four wheel, 50 kg (110 lbs) vehicle travels at a top speed of 6 kmh (4 mph) and has laser sensors to help navigate around obstacles.
The scooter, developed by the National University of Singapore (NUS), is the city-state's latest experiment with driverless vehicles as it pushes ahead with its vision of using autonomous technology to help deal with the challenges of its limited land and labour.
The scooter has undergone successful tests on campus and developers said it can help improve mobility for all ages, cut down on the need for cars and also lower accident rates.
"I'm sure you have experienced people who just use their handphone while walking, and almost run into you ... so it would be nice if you are just sitting down and checking your emails," said NUS Associate Professor and project leader Marcelo Ang Jr.
"We just give you more choices."
Ang Jr said that the scooter would be able to work in tandem with other driverless vehicles in Singapore, where robo-taxis are being tested and trials are planned for self-driving buses.
He said the scooter was meant for use on narrow pathways which larger vehicles cannot access.
Currently the scooter takes a few seconds to calibrate a different route when it nears an obstacle - something Ang Jr. said the team was looking to improve.
Users, though, did not seem too bothered by the brief pause.
"It goes really smoothly and travels very safely," said student Kevin Xiangyu Hui, who tested the scooter.
The project, a collaboration between the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART), and NUS will be further tested and is not for sale.
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