Launched in 2017, the STAR project, Rapid Autonomous Transport System, which aims to develop the first driverless, autonomous standard bus, capable of operating under conditions similar to real operation, should produce a prototype in early 2021.
Lyon, June 24th, 2019
12 metres length and capable of carrying around a hundred passengers in optimal conditions in terms of security, safety and comfort, the objective of this bus is to achieve speeds of up to 40km/h, all without a driver.
To do this, IVECO BUS, together with a group of companies and laboratories, is equipping its prototype with electronic components and sensors. Its partner, EasyMile, a world leader in intelligent mobility solutions, is providing its technology as well as its experience in platform integration, deployment and autonomous vehicle fleet management.
In November 2017, all the project partners, Ifsttar, Inria, Isae-Supaero, Michelin, Sector and Transpolis, received the approval of the French Unique Interministerial Fund (FUI) with the support of the CARA and Aerospace Valley competitiveness clusters. For its part, IVECO BUS is receiving a subsidy from the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region for this project.
The development of this driverless bus is the result of the collaboration of these partners with the following areas of expertise:
- EasyMile, provider of driverless vehicles solutions
- Iffstar, for the accessibility of people with reduced mobility and the acceptability of this type of vehicle for all users
- Inria, for the perception and avoidance of obstacles on the road at high speed
- Isae-Supaero, for localisation
- IVECO BUS, for the bus and drive-by-wire solutions
- Michelin, for the smart tyres
- Sector, for the security and risk management
- Transpolis, for the validation tests
This research and development project will enable us to understand the constraints of driverless operation, and to test a level 4 autonomous bus under real conditions, the final stage before full autonomy. Initially, this bus will operate in reserved areas or on dedicated roads, evolving towards integration into the normal traffic flow.
This project marks a crucial milestone in Europe in the field of autonomous transport, fully aware that other challenges must be taken up in other areas: evolution of the regulatory and legislative framework…
The STAR research project has been accredited by the CARA competitiveness cluster. The aim of CARA is to catalyse transformations in urban mobility, in particular tomorrow’s transport of people and goods.
For many years, Iveco Bus has been developing driving aids for buses. In addition to the optical guidance, which has been ensuring buses pull up at stops perfectly for more than 15 years, today, IVECO BUS coaches offer many technical advancements that improve security and constitute the first steps towards autonomous driving.
Iveco Bus has also tested the “intelligent garage”. The principle is that buses, equipped with sensors, park themselves in the depot, without human involvement. This offers the advantage of a quicker manoeuvre, saving time and space: the vehicle drives itself, optimising the space available, on entering and exiting the depot. Refuelling and washing can also be carried out in full autonomy.
So much testing and work towards a fully autonomous bus, ready to take up tomorrow’s challenges, in complete safety.