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University Of Michigan Launches Driverless Shuttle On Campus

A driverless shuttle is now up and running at the University of Michigan.  Mcity launched the free service this morning.

"That' we're reaching another century or something."

That's how University of Michigan attorney Ndu Ozor felt as he boarded the all electric shuttle built by the French firm NAVYA.  The 11-passenger shuttle covers a one-mile roundtrip contained to the North Campus Research Complex.  Ozor says it's exciting.

"Especially seeing cars coming across and the vehicle stopping at the stop signs and proceeding naturally as a driver would," said Ozor during the ride.

Brian Dokas has an internship this summer on campus and was among the first people to also ride the shuttle that goes about 12 MPH. 

"It's shocking.  I've never been on a driverless vehicle before and I'm pleasantly surprised on how it's performing," said Dokas.

The university is using two shuttles.  They run Monday through Friday between 9AM and 3PM.  The shuttles are equipped withlidar, which uses invisible laser beams to build a view of the surrounding environment, and GPS for localization.  A safety conductor is on board in case of an emergency.

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— Jorge Avellan is a reporter for 89.1 WEMU News. Contact him at 734.487.3363 or email him javellan@emich.edu

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