Next stop, Royal Djurgården. The future of public transport has arrived at Stockholm’s green oasis. Today, a new bus route has been inaugurated where a self-driving, electric minibus connected to 5G will traffic 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 projects are backed by Vinnova and Drive Sweden.
The minibus, delivered by technology company T-Engineering, will operate a route between Rosendals slott and Skansen’s Hazeliusporten for approximately two weeks from 24 September, connecting two different areas at Djurgården with lots of popular tourist attractions, including several museums including 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.
A glimpse of the future for cities
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 optimize route planning and traffic. Benefits include reducing operational costs and 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 digitalization and new technologies that make life easier for the inhabitants.The 5G network’s unique technical features, including enhanced security, extremely high data speeds combined with low latency, means that the connected buses can respond in real time to commands from the centralized control tower.
Led by Urban ICT Arena
The pilot is the result of a unique collaboration between some of Sweden’s most prominent and well-known organizations within the fields of mobility and technology. The knowledge hub and testbed Urban ICT Arena leads the initiative with Keolis as bus operator. Ericsson provides 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 delivers analytics capabilities and the 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, delivers vehicle and self-driving technology. The ambition is for the project to Djurgården in the future.