5G-powered self-driving, electric minibus premiere at Royal Djurgården24/09/2020
Next stop, Royal Djurgården. The future of public transport has arrived here at Stockholm’s green oasis. Today, a new bus route has been inaugurated where a self-driving, electric minibus connected to 5G will transport visitors during September. HRH Prince Daniel was among the dignitaries to attend the official inauguration ceremony outside Tekniska Museet. The pilot is part of an initiative led by Urban ICT Arena, Keolis, Telia, Ericsson and Intel that focuses on how 5G and control towers can enable a more sustainable and efficient public transport system.
The minibus, delivered by technology company T-Engineering, will operate a route between Rosendals slott and Skansen’s Hazeliusporten for approximately two weeks from 24th September, connecting two different areas at Djurgården with lots of popular tourist attractions, including several museums such as Tekniska museet and Sjöhistoriska as well as Nordiska museet and Vasamuseet. A safety driver will be present in the vehicle at all times.
The pilot now running at Djurgården, called 5G Ride, is part of several projects that collectively focus on how 5G and control towers can help facilitate the safe introduction of self-driving, electric vehicle busses in urban areas.
The hope is that an intelligent electric transport system like this, powered by renewable energy and where operators remotely administrate large fleets of autonomous vehicles, will optimise route planning and traffic. Benefits include reducing operational costs and the environmental footprint while offering public transport that is more reliable and accessible to passengers. The cities of the future will be more sustainable and smarter through digitalisation and new technologies that make life easier for the inhabitants.
The 5G network’s unique technical features, which include enhanced security and extremely high data speeds combined with low latency, means that the connected buses can respond in real time to commands from the centralised control tower.
The pilot is the result of a unique collaboration between some of Sweden’s most prominent and well-known organisations within the fields of mobility and technology. The knowledge hub and testbed Urban ICT Arena is leading the initiative, with Keolis as the bus operator. Ericsson is providing the technical solution for the connected control tower. Telia provides the 5G connectivity in collaboration with Ericsson and has deployed 5G at Djurgården specifically for this project.
Intel is in charge of the analytically capabilities and technology for the processing across the network, including the IT-system in the vehicles and the control tower, as well as the mobile network. T-Engineering, a Swedish technology firm, is responsible for the vehicle and self-driving technology.
The aim is for the project to show a glimpse of a sustainable future at Royal Djurgården.
HRH Prince Daniel attended the ceremony.
Some words on the project:
Jan Kilström, CEO, Keolis Sweden:
“Cities in the future will benefit from digitalisation and new technologies by making them smarter and more sustainable, thereby improving and simplifying their way of life. Efficient public transport that is accessible to many is an essential part of a smart city. Autonomous electric buses can help meet the demand for such a transport system. We see this as the start of a journey. We hope to deploy the system in more place in coming years, including scaling up the pilot at Djurgården”.
Anders Olsson, CEO, Telia Sweden:
“This project is a great example of how 5G can benefit society. Self-driving technology combined with electrification and 5G can help transform public transport, making it more efficient to operate and more accessible to the people who need it, while reducing its environmental footprint. These are key components in building smarter cities”.
Jenny Lindqvist, Head of CU Northern and Central Europe, Ericsson:
“We are proud to be part of this exciting journey, quite literally. From the passengers’ experience to road safety and the environmental impact, the potential 5G offers to society is ever-growing. Ericsson’s control tower solution, with the efficiency and reliability of 5G, manages self-driving buses in a smart way, transforming transport as we know it. In partnership with Telia, we are enabling 5G as the fundamental platform for innovation, making sustainable transport a reality in Stockholm”.
Daniel Helldén (Green Party) deputy mayor of public transport in Stockholm:
“To solve our problems with congestion, air quality and climate emissions in Stockholm we need many different transport solutions. We feel positive about these types of pilot projects because we believe that the vehicle of the future is autonomous, electric and easy to share, and this autonomous electric bus is a perfect example of that”.
“Pilots like the one at Royal Djurgården show that our public transport system serves as a suitable partner in testing new technologies concerning automatisation, digitalisation and electrification. We encourage partnerships putting the conventional perception of public transport to the test. It brings the mobility solutions of tomorrow closer to today”.
Djurgården’s attractions are working with international organisations to build the transport of the future (17.17)
The project promotes the idea that cities should reduce their environmental impact in terms of emissions and noise (11.2,6)
All-electric transport contributes to a reduction in CO2 emissions (13.2)