In an ongoing effort to help Singapore develop innovative transport solutions, the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART) [新加坡-麻省理工学院科研中心] launched Singapore’s very first locally-developed driverless car that is designed for operations on public roads.
Adapted from its prototype driverless golf cart, this driverless car dubbed SCOT (Shared Computer Operated Transport) is operationally-ready for the public roads. Unlike other driverless cars which are retrofitted with expensive 3-D laser sensors, SCOT relies on low-cost off-the-shelf LIDAR sensors which enable the car to drive autonomously, independent of the Global Positioning System (GPS). This unique feature allows it to drive even in tunnels and places where GPS signals would be hindered.
A collaborative project between SMART and the National University of Singapore (NUS), this driverless car aims to resolve the “first- and last-mile problem”, which is especially pertinent in view of Singapore’s ageing society. It also aims to help promote car-sharing as the driverless car is able to resolve the ‘rebalancing’ issue (i.e. getting the car to the next car-sharing customer once the previous customer drops off the car) when cars are shared.