The European Automated Driving Roadmap (ERTRAC – European Road transport Advisory Council, 2017) defines a development path for Automated Urban Mobility Systems such as Automated Shuttles, beside paths for Automated Passenger Cars and Automated Freight Vehicles. Automated Shuttles should play a key role as on-demand feeder to intermodal transport hubs or as on-demand shuttles for regional personal transport systems (use case “New Flexibility” in the Austrian Action Plan for Automated Driving). Despite enormous technical progress over the last years, current tests on open roads show that automated shuttles have only reached automated driving level 2 (“Partial Automation”) or in the best case level 3 (“Conditional Automation”) following the international SAE J3016 classification. Worldwide, more and more tests on open roads are conducted or planned, however, there is a lack of projects targeting the systematic development of automated shuttles towards higher automation levels.
The Austrian flagship project “Digibus Austria” pursues the goal, to research and test methods, technologies and models for proofing a reliable and traffic-safe operation of automated shuttles on open roads in mixed traffic in a regional driving environment on automated driving level 3 (“Conditional Automation”) and creating foundations for automation level 4 (“High Automation”). Expected results address the following fields: (1) Driving environment and digital infrastructure (assessment and configuration of the driving environment, (partly) automated toolchain for generating the digital driving environment as well as the driving path, robust and reliable connectivity and positioning), (2) driving scenarios and interaction with other traffic participants (traffic-safe completion of typical driving scenarios in mixed traffic, concepts for traffic-safe interaction with other traffic participants) and (3) automated mobility system and passenger interaction during driverless operation (intermodal mobility system integration, voice and video-based interaction for passengers during driverless operation). All methods, technologies and models are tested on a non-public test track (Driving Center Teesdorf or Salzburg Ring) as well as on two public, regional test tracks (Salzburg Koppl and Wiener Neustadt, Federal State Exhibition 2019 of Lower Austria) including 100 test persons as well as up to 10.000 passengers. The results will lay the foundation for an Austrian Reference Model for real-world testing and operation of autonomous shuttles in regional public transport systems. Direct expected impacts are: 16 follow-up projects in Austria with a volume of EUR 7.5M, EUR 37M international market potential as well as 600.000 passengers during the first three years after the project. The flagship project Digibus Austria, with a runtime of 3 years, coordinated by Salzburg Research, is conducted by a top-class consortium of leading enterprises (Kapsch TrafficCom, ÖBB Holding, PRISMA solutions, Commend, Fluidtime, HERRY Consult, EasyMile) and research institutes (Virtual Vehicle Competence Center, Austrian Institute of Technology, University of Salzburg – Center for Human Computer Interaction, University of Natural Resources Vienna – Institute for Transport Studies, Factum) along the complete value chain from vehicle manufacturers to mobility service providers.
Peripheral and rural areas suffer disparities in mobility domain all around Europe.
SMACKER will address those disparities to fill the gap and to promote public transport and mobility services able to be demand-responsive and to connect to TEN-T corridors and transport nodes. SMACKER will assess main barriers and bias and address them by providing solutions that draw on the best international know-how. Soft measures (campaigns) and actions (pilots) will be used to identify and promote eco-friendly solutions for public transport in rural and peripheral areas to achieve more liveable and sustainable environments, better integration of the population to main corridors and better services feeding main public transport. SMACKER will help local communities to (re)design transport services according to users’ need (co-design) and to nudge people (residents and incoming) to use them, by providing motivating and incentive giving campaigns.
Direct beneficiaries of the measures will be residents, incoming travellers and commuters.
SMACKER will address local communities in partners’ area using a comprehensive approach, by scaling local problems to a broader European level and importing solutions able to find and suggest the most suitable answers for most of the mobility needs. SMACKER will introduce innovations in both soft measures and actions such as for instance nudging, gamification, co-design, branding and information technologies.
Campaigns and pilots will be aligned with local SUMPs requirements and KPIs in order to provide a substantial and measurable contribution to strategical objectives. SMACKER will also have a strong focus on transferring lesson learnt and success stories behind its borders, by involving other similar areas and arranging dedicated events and tools for dissemination.