MOT, PSA to start truck platooning trials

SINGAPORE will soon kick off truck platooning trials.

The Ministry of Transport (MOT) and PSA Corporation on Monday announced that they have signed agreements with two automotive companies, Scania and Toyota Tsusho, to develop and test-bed an autonomous truck platooning system for use on Singapore's public roads.

Truck platooning involves a human-driven lead truck leading a convoy of driverless trucks. In the Singapore trials, the trucks will transport containers from one port terminal to another.

MOT and PSA said that truck platooning will enable efficient freight movement, alleviate Singapore's shortage of manpower, and allow more freight movement to be conducted at night to ease traffic congestion.

Ong Kim Pong, regional chief for South-east Asia at PSA International, said: "As PSA prepares for our future terminals at Tuas, it is timely that we move on to the next steps in developing autonomous truck platooning technology ... It underlines our joint commitment to being future-ready, while also helping us continue to serve our customers better through fast and efficient inter-terminal container movement."

The truck platooning trials will take place in two phases over a three-year period from January 2017 to December 2019. A 10 km long test route along West Coast Highway has been designated for the phase two trials.

These agreements follow from a request for proposals exercise, suite to a memorandum of understanding inked between MOT and PSA in October 2015 to collaborate and co-fund truck platooning projects.

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