Singapore has released a set of national standards to guide the local industry in the "safe" development and rollout of autonomous vehicles, outlining guidelines related to vehicle behaviour, functional safety, cybersecurity, and data formats. Called Technical Reference 68 (TR 68), the standards were developed over the past year by various representatives from the autonomous vehicle sector, research and education institutions, and government agencies.
The effort was led by the Singapore Standards Council's Manufacturing Standards Committee and also included advice from overseas experts, according to a statement Thursday jointly released by the Land Transport Authority (LTA), Enterprise Singapore, Standards Development Organisation, and Singapore Standards Council.
They noted that TR 68 will be further refined as autonomous vehicle technology continues to mature and the industry provides further feedback.
Permanent Secretary for Transport and chairman of the Committee on Autonomous Road Transport for Singapore, Loh Ngai Seng, said plans were underway to launch a pilot deployment of autonomous vehicles in Punggol, Tengah, and Jurong Innovation District in the early 2020s, and TR 68 would help guide industry players in "the safe and effective deployment" of such vehicles in the city-state.
Enterprise Singapore's director-general of quality and excellence group Choy Sauw Kook said: "In addition to safety, TR 68 provides a strong foundation that will ensure interoperability of data and cybersecurity that are necessary for the deployment of autonomous vehicles in an urban environment. The TR 68 will also help to build up the autonomous vehicle ecosystem, including startups and SMEs (small and midsize enterprises) as well as testing, inspection, and certification service providers."
TR 68 documentation can be purchased from the Singapore Standards eShop.
LTA in November 2017 announced plans to trial the use of autonomous buses and on-demand shuttle vehicles to serve commuters in three districts--Punggol, Tengah, and Jurong Innovation District--from 2022.
A test centre in November 2017 also was opened to develop standards and ensure the safe deployment of autonomous vehicles on public roads. Spanning two hectares in Jurong Innovation District, the site was jointly developed by LTA, Nanyang Technological University of Singapore, and JTC. The test site will be able to replicate different elements of local roads, with common traffic schemes, road infrastructures, and traffic rules, which are necessary to test navigation controls in AVs. The facility also included a rain simulator and flood zone to test the vehicles' navigation abilities under different weather conditions.
HDT Singapore Taxi has been given the country's seventh taxi license after a two-year road trial and will be required to roll out at least 800 electric taxis island-wide within four years.
Spanning two hectares, the new test site will be used to trial communication and interaction between autonomous vehicles and other road vehicles.
With public trials already running in the country, the Singapore government is looking to update local laws to better safeguard commuters in driverless and ride-sharing vehicles.
A day after a crash involving an autonomous car, Singapore's transport authority announces plans to test self-driving buses and conduct research to improve real-time monitoring of the country rail network.