The Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore), the Land Transport Authority (LTA) and JTC have today opened Singapore’s first autonomous vehicle (AV) test centre located in Jurong Innovation District.

2.  The new 2-hectare test facility which was jointly developed by LTA, NTU and JTC, will support the Centre of Excellence for Testing & Research of AVs – NTU (CETRAN), which was launched on 1 Aug 2016, to spearhead the development of testing requirements for AVs. Together with CETRAN and its partners, LTA will work towards developing the necessary standards and testing regimes for the safe deployment of AVs on our public roads. As there are currently no existing international test standards or international certification bodies for AVs, CETRAN will anchor Singapore’s position in supporting the testing and eventual widespread deployment of AVs.

Fully-Equipped Test Centre

3.  For safe and seamless integration onto public roads, AVs need to be tested on their communication and interaction with other vehicles, road infrastructure and elements as well as dispatch and routing systems. To facilitate the testing of AV navigation controls in a real-world environment, the CETRAN AV Test Centre is designed to replicate the different elements of Singapore’s roads, with common traffic schemes, road infrastructure, and traffic rules. The circuit also features a rain simulator and flood zone to test AVs’ navigation abilities under different weather conditions.

4.  To monitor the progress of AV testing, LTA has installed a network of seven 360-degrees close circuit television (CCTV) cameras at strategic locations across the test centre. Real-time footages from these CCTVs will be streamed back to the AutOnomous VehicLe MonItoring and EValuation SystEm (OLIVE), housed at LTA’s Intelligent Transport Systems Centre. Through OLIVE, LTA will be able to integrate data from AVs and the CCTVs to evaluate the readiness of AVs for public use. Please refer to the Annex for the Test Centre’s layout and detailed features.

5.  LTA’s Chief Innovation and Technology Officer Mr Lam Wee Shan said: “The launch of the CETRAN AV Test Centre today marks a significant milestone in our efforts to become a leading global hub for the development of autonomous vehicle technology. As the safety of all road users is paramount, the Test Centre has been outfitted with equipment and infrastructure that can be configured to simulate various traffic scenarios for AV testing in a dense urban setting. This is an important enabler as we continue to explore ways to leverage the latest AV technology for our land transport system, be it in the form of mass public transport or shared transport options. By being able to test out the safety and feasibility of latest AV research, we can develop these research into deployable projects that will ultimately benefit users of our transport systems.”

6.  Professor Lam Khin Yong, NTU’s Acting Provost, Chief of Staff and Vice President for Research, said, “Like many urban cities in the world, Singaporeans rely heavily on a mix of public transport, personal cars and taxis for their daily commute, and autonomous vehicles are expected to play an increasing role in future mobility solutions. NTU has been ramping up research in autonomous vehicles in the past several years and it is also the first to trial a driverless vehicle in Singapore. The commissioning of this Test Centre marks a new milestone for Singapore and leveraging on NTU’s strengths in research excellence and innovation, the university is primed to accelerate the development and deployment of autonomous vehicles for the nation.”

Located in Singapore’s Largest Living Lab

7.  CETRAN and the Test Centre is strategically located in Jurong Innovation District, Singapore’s largest living lab. Jurong Innovation District will house companies focusing on urban solutions, advanced manufacturing, and smart logistics. The co-location of NTU, research institutes and a network of corporations will foster closer collaboration among academia, industries and enterprises to further the development of new solutions and innovation within the District.

8.  “The rapid pace of technological advancement in the urban solutions space is transforming the way we live and work, and will change the way we plan and develop our estates. As a living lab, Jurong Innovation District allows us to harness new technologies like autonomous vehicles, and provide a conducive environment for the development and adoption of urban mobility solutions,” said JTC CEO, Mr Ng Lang.

Furthering AV Research through Industry Partnerships

9.  Together with NTU, CETRAN will work closely with industry partners such as Siemens and SystemX to explore various areas of AV research. This includes exploring support infrastructure for AVs such as sensors and signalling systems, and perform independent verification of autonomous vehicles through computer simulations.

10. CETRAN also inked partnership agreements with four organisations during the ceremony. They are PTV Asia-Pacific Pte Ltd, a leading corporation in traffic and transportation solutions, the National Physical Laboratory, United Kingdom’s largest applied physics organisation, and NXP Semiconductors Singapore Pte Ltd, global automotive semiconductor supplier in secure connected cars, and Diamond Energy for energy management technologies for electric autonomous vehicles.