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Testing time for roads around Shannon in 2021
Driverless cars will become a feature on roads around Shannon next year, according to plans from car manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover (JLR).
The company is collaborating with other technology partners to establish a research hub in Shannon to be known as The Future Mobility Campus Ireland (FMCI).
Among these are well known brands such as Seagate, Cisco, Renovo, Red Hat and Valeo, a French car component supplier.
During 2021 up to 12km of local roads around Shannon will be fitted with sensors o provide communication with autonomous cars and ‘smart’ features to warn control systems in the vehicles of possible hazards.
According to JLR other infrastructure will include electric car-charging terminals, autonomous parking areas and a dedicated air corridor at Shannon Airport allowing for the deployment of drones to monitor and locate the autonomous test cars.
Up to €7 million will be invested in the project, it is expected that further announcements on jobs and recruitment will be made in the near future.
Commenting on the testing project John Cormican, general manager for Shannon Ireland Jaguar Land Rover, said: “This partnership with FMCI provides us with a real-world facility to trial our emerging autonomous, connected, electrified and shared technology in a strategic location. Collaborating with top-tier software companies will allow us to develop our future systems more efficiently.”
Russell Vickers, chief executive of FMCI, said the Shannon Free Zone would offer a “first-class facility” for the tests. He added, “the testbed provides an opportunity to test in the real world and help answer some of the questions posed by the future of mobility in a collaborative and efficient way.”
Photograph by Eugene McCafferty on 23/10/2020