The WEpod is the first fully autonomous vehicle to appear on the Dutch public road. This driverless vehicle will be operating a service between Ede-Wageningen railway station and Wageningen University. In order to forestall any possible danger it is equipped with extensive safety and control systems. Technolution has provided the technical coordination and integration in WEpod, but has also created the connection between the WEpods and the control room in Ede.
A lot of different parties contributed to WEpod, many of them by making technical systems. The challenge in these kinds of situation is always to ensure that all these systems work together properly; but this is especially vital for an autonomous vehicle. Technolution understands the technologies and was able to adapt them in such a way as to realize the combination that ensures that the system works the way it should.
In order to safeguard the safety of passengers and other road users, the WEpod is equipped with a number of cooperating safety systems. Cameras, radars and laser scanners together ensure that the WEpod swerves around obstacles instead of colliding with pedestrians or other road users. The vehicle’s GPS location is complemented by these camera images and radar information to obtain very accurate readings of its position on the road. In addition, the WEpod is able to communicate with traffic lights it encounters on its route. We used our modular development platform Bloqbase for this functionality.
A high-level controller controls all parts in the WEpod and communicates with the control room. Our SigmaXG system in the control room ensures that images from inside and around the WEpod are visible, and that an operator can monitor the vehicle from a distance.
Experience the WEpod for yourself