The CyberCab is the name of 2getthere's Personal Rapid Transit vehicle. A PRT-like system was first showcased during the Floriade 2002, while the first real, city-wide, PRT system is being realized at Masdar City in Abu Dhabi.
2getthere markets and develops short range Automated People Mover systems for personal and group transportation, which provide efficient, high quality, tailored transport solutions. The product range consists of the ParkShuttle and the CyberCab. Possible applications, whether they concern simple connections or complicated networks, range from city centers to residential areas, business and industrial parks, theme parks and resorts. For the realization of applications, 2getthere cooperates with expert companies in the areas of vehicle and infrastructure development and the operation of public transportation systems.
CyberCab transportation system
The CyberCab can be compared to a taxi. It is fully flexible, capable of stopping anywhere, picking up passengers and transporting them to any destination via the shortest route - on the routing network. This innovative transportation system is based on proven technology that has been used in other applications.
2getthere's Personal Rapid Transit system features of a number of automated taxi-like (CyberCabs) and the supervisory control system TOMS (Transit Operations Monitoring and Supervision). The guide way can be constructed at grade, but also elevated, embedded in buildings or underground. The system in configurable as true PRT - providing direct connections, on-demand operations and personal transportation, but alternatively ride sharing (single origin, multiple destinations) and scheduled operations (to optimize capacity) can also be implemented.
Personal Rapid Transit is all about (network and vehicle) controls. 2getthere's ability to provide a PRT system is based on the well-proven (20+ years) FROG network and vehicle controls, fully customized for Automated People Mover requirements. The CyberCab vehicle is developed in close co-operation with expert 3rd parties with automotive experience. The CyberCab accommodates a 6-person family (4 adults, 2 children) and additionally has space available for either a wheelchair or luggage. The height of the vehicle does not allow passengers to be transported standing up. The width of the vehicle is a mere 1450 mm (approximately 50 inches), resulting in a narrow track. The CyberCab is fully accessible to wheelchairs. The pollution and noise by the CyberCab are minimized through the electric propulsion used. The platform in combination with the automated guidance ensures a comfortable and enjoyable journey. The maximum speed of the Cyber Cab is 40 km/h (25 mph).
The concept, navigation system, supervisory control system, infrastructure requirements and safety features of the CyberCab are derived from the ParkShuttle (see detailed description).
Masdar City Personal Rapid Transit (Abu Dhabi)
In the heart of Abu Dhabi work has started on the most ambitious sustainable development in the world today. Masdar City will be the world's first carbon neutral, zero-waste to landfill, car-free city powered entirely by alternative energy sources. Masdar City will be built on six and a half square kilometres and will grow eventually to house 1,500 businesses, 40,000 residents and 50,000 commuters. There will be no fossil fuel cars within Masdar City. The city will be a pedestrian-friendly environment, with a Personal Rapid Transit system (PRT) available for longer journeys. The PRT vehicles will travel at speeds up to 40km/h, with the longest routes in the city taking around 10 minutes. Ultimately there will be 3,000 PRT vehicles serving 130,000 trips/day using 85 stations.
The dedicated guideway is in the undercroft, an artificial basement created by raising the pedestrian level. It will also accommodate the Freight Rapid Transit system (FRT). The FRT system is capable of making 5,000 trips per day carrying the loads and deliveries for residents, stores and hotels. The flatbed vehicles can carry two pallets, with a maximum total payload of 1,600kg. The PRT & FRT will be entirely powered by renewable energy. The vehicles are equipped with Lithium-Phosphate batteries, allowing a range of approximately 60 kilometers on a 1,5 hour charge. The vehicles will be recharged at the stations, avoiding the necessity of additional parking space (garage). The stations feature angled berths, allowing all vehicles independent entry and exit.
2getthere was selected as the supplier for the first phase of Masdar City, providing the link to the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology (MI) by means of 8 PRT, 2 VIP (leather interior) and 3 FRT vehicles. In this phase the network will be approximately 1,2 kilometers long and feature 5 stations (2 for passengers, 3 for freight).
Floriade 2002 is the Netherland's greatest horticultural show of the decade. The exhibition is an initiative of the Nederlandse Tuinbouw Raad (Dutch Horticultural Council). It is an event that takes place every ten years, and is organized each time in cooperation with a new city. Floriade 2002 officially opened to the public on April 6, 2002, in the city of Haarlemmermeer, located to the southwest of Amsterdam and Schiphol Airport.
"Our vision was to create a compact park for the event, with a simple layout and consequently a clear route to lead visitors around", according to Ron Koek, Technical Manager of the organizing committee. "Because of this we didn't need a transportation system covering the entire grounds. On previous Floriades we had systems like that but they have limited added value. They usually follow the main paths and, as expensive systems are required, it has been difficult to run a profitable operation for a short-term event like Floriade. Instead, the decision was made to work with multiple transportation subsystems".
"It has become a tradition to have a look-out point on the Floriade grounds. In the past, we had temporary towers with the single exception of Rotterdam's Euromast in 1960", says Koek. "This time we have opted for an observation hill with a much higher capacity. But the look-out point must be accessible to everyone. Consequently, next to the staircase, another transportation system will be required to take people up Big Spotters Hill.
In addition to the practical advantages, the CyberCab's automatic vehicle image also fits in well with Floriade's theme. Koek: "In the park's section next to Big Spotters Hill, the focus is on 'the Art of''-part of Floriade's motto: Feel the Art of Nature. 'The Art of' represents the artistic and artificial way in which people treat nature. This section of Floriade is aimed at the future and how it is believed people will treat nature then. The CyberCab is future-oriented, durable, flexible and personal. These are aspects that fit in well with Floriade and in particular with the theme of that section of the park.? Koek continues: "Because of these qualities, it was easy to fit the CyberCab system into the Floriade park".
The design of the CyberCab, as it is being used during Floriade 2002, is the creation of French designer Sacha Lakic. It is an open design, offering passengers a good view of the surrounding area. They will be able to see the scenery pass by from all different sides of Big Spotters Hill. Floriade's many faces will be on display during the ride to the top. Without experiencing the view from a CyberCab, a visit to Floriade 2002 will not be complete!
A total of 25 CyberCabs were deployed to take people to the summit. The vehicle's speed will be limited to 11 km/hour, thereby offering the passengers plenty of time to enjoy the view and the ride. On average, a vehicle leaves from the station at the base of the hill every 24 seconds. The maximum capacity of the transportation system will be 600 people an hour, in both directions.
The Floriade project will be of great importance to the future of automatic people transportation. The objective is to really put the system on display and to show that automatic transportation is not only possible, but that it can be operated profitably even during temporary events such as these. As Koek has said: "An exhibition like Floriade can play an important role in the acceptance of innovative concepts. It can show the future of a new concept, while at the same time creating a foundation for the concept. We are not only doing this for the CyberCabs but also for the solar panel roof at the North entrance".
The Floriade organizing committee is convinced that they made the right choice: "CyberCab will be a valuable addition to Floriade; it is an exceptional means of transportation, which will undoubtedly be very popular with our visitors. I expect the public to really appreciate the system!", says Koek. This customer appreciation was already apparent on a recent Floriade Open Day, where the public had their first introduction to the CyberCabs.
Some illustrations of vehicles that are currently being developed by 2getthere for other applications are also available. For more information, please contact: Robbert Lohmann at (+31 (0)30 2383570) firstname.lastname@example.org
Last modified: August 12, 2009