2023 Author: Bryan Walter | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 22:24
American and Singaporean scientists have developed an unmanned electric scooter for the disabled and the elderly. Its description was presented at the 19th International Conference on Smart Transport Systems of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers ITSC 2016 in Rio de Janeiro and published in the proceedings of the event.
Disabled electric scooters are designed for people with limited mobility and, in fact, are motorized wheelchairs made in the form of a scooter. Despite their obvious convenience, some users may experience difficulties in management due to impairments of vision, attention or coordination.
To eliminate these complications, staff at the National University of Singapore, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Singapore-MIT Technology Research Alliance have developed an unmanned wheelchair scooter. They chose the S19 electric scooter from Heartway Medical as the base platform for its compactness and maneuverability.
The developers have equipped the scooter with additional equipment: a camera, inertial sensors, lidars, wheel rotation sensors, actuators, computing devices and power systems necessary for autonomous operation. The main computer with a 3.9 gigahertz Intel Core i7-4770R processor, 16 gigabytes of RAM and a 250 gigabyte solid-state hard drive runs Ubuntu 14.04. One lidar, located at a height of 1.9 meters, scans the terrain at a distance of up to 50 meters and serves for navigation, the other, located at the bottom of the front of the scooter, monitors obstacles at a distance of up to 10 meters.
Scooter wiring diagram
The unmanned scooter is 93 centimeters long, 48.5 centimeters wide and 210 centimeters high (due to the lidar bar). With a mass of 56 kilograms, it can move up to 85 kilograms at a speed of up to eight kilometers per hour for a distance of up to 20 kilometers and overcome slopes of up to six degrees. The scooter is powered by one 24-volt lithium-polymer and two 12-volt lead-acid batteries.
Scooter system architecture
As noted by the developers, the scooter can not only be used by people with disabilities, but also become part of the city's self-driving system on call, in addition to the already developed autonomous vehicles and golf cards. Compared to the latter, it has a lower speed, is not adapted for driving on highways, but is much more maneuverable.
The Singapore authorities are showing great interest in unmanned vehicles. A pilot project of its operation with the participation of the British company Delphi will begin in the One-north business park in 2017 and will continue for three years. The commercial unmanned taxi service is slated to launch in 2022.