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Gadgets & Home Improvement

Try out driverless buggies at gardens

VISITORS to the Chinese and Japanese Gardens will be able to take a ride into the future when a trial of two driverless buggies begins on Thursday.
The Straits Times - October 21, 2014
By: AMIR HUSSAIN
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Try out driverless buggies at gardens The driverless buggy (above) can take up to three people, and use sensors to guide them around pre-programmed pathways in the gardens. -- PHOTOS: EDWARD TEO FOR THE STRAITS TIMES

VISITORS to the Chinese and Japanese Gardens will be able to take a ride into the future when a trial of two driverless buggies begins on Thursday.

Powered by electric battery, the modified golf buggies have a top speed of 10kmh, can take up to three people, and use sensors to guide them around pre-programmed pathways in the gardens. Passengers just click on a control panel to set them in motion.

The buggies will be available to hire for free as part of a 10-day trial. They will then be evaluated before being rolled out as a new means of transport for the gardens.

The Jurong Lake District has been earmarked as a "live test-bed" for a wide variety of solutions that focus on urban mobility and sustainability.

The buggies were developed by researchers from the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology and the National University of Singapore (NUS).

NUS Associate Professor Marcelo Ang said: "Mobility should be available to all - the elderly, young, or the disabled. We hope that the public will see the usefulness of these vehicles as a possible solution to the 'first-and-last mile' problem, and be comfortable with the idea that such driverless cars can co-exist with pedestrian traffic."

The buggies can be booked via www.smartnusav.com

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