Leeds Self-Driving PODs
"Super-connected" self-driving PODs to be trialled in Leeds city centre.
20:16 04 May 2018
Telecom operator aql, Gulf Oil and a consortium of partners have announced plans to trial ‘super-connected’ self-driving PODs later this year. The PODs, which were featured at the Leeds Digital Festival alongside a jet pack flight, will be deployed on the South Bank and will run on newly-developed software systems.
aql’s mobile operator division has the license to test 5G applications in the UK and is currently focusing on building supporting 5G infrastructure in Leeds. The company will initially manage PODs safety controls and then open the platform to developers for further innovation.
Prof. Adam Beaumont, founder and CEO of aql, said: “Until now, much of the software for autonomy has been driven by the automotive industry. We want to embrace other disciplines such as VR and gaming which have strong transferable spatial awareness skills to help innovate and create the next generation of smart city.
“Without this technology, driverless cars, for example, will simply join the traffic queues – we need cross-city communication and coordination via the next generation of mobile network technology to unlock the potential of driverless platforms.
Jonathan Turner, CEO of Bayford Oil, commented: “The Gulf brand is world-recognised as a leader and enabler in motorsport and transport, but our history is largely around fossil fuels.
“We are passionate about embracing the transition to renewable energy and continue to support innovation in electric transport and the next generation of autonomous transport. I have a vision for enabling the future of motorsport and transport whilst minimising our impact on our planet.”