Look, ma, no
driver! Driverless shuttles are coming to Lake Nona.
Orlando’s Lake Nona unveiled the first autonomous vehicles in Florida last Tuesday.
Autonomous vehicle company Beep revealed that a miniature, self-driving bus will hit the streets of Lake Nona in the coming months.
Move Nona is a self-driving shuttle and will seat up to 15 passengers. The vehicle will be able to travel no more than 16 miles per hour, according to Beep. The project is supplied by French company Navya, whose representatives also came to Lake Nona to announce Beep had been chosen as a partner on the project. Both Beep and Navya have been contracted by Lake Nona owner and prime developer- Tavistock Group which is a Bahamas-based private investment organization founded in 1975 and controlling assets in various land development projects.
Dozens of executives and local officials gathered in the Orlando suburb for the announcement. Beep is planning to plant its headquarters square in Lake Nona – a 17 square-mile neighborhood in south Orlando billed as one of the newest, fastest developing tech-heavy ‘smart cities.’ If you need one of the new autonome shuttles, all you have to do is use an app to request a pickup. The shuttles run on batteries and are guided by sensors. The project aims to reduce air pollution and congestion. Each bus will be able to accommodate eight seated passengers and there is standing room for a few more.
Buddy Dyer told reporters that the aim of the area is to become one of the
autonomous vehicle central-points of all the United States as currently it is one
of ten autonomous vehicle proving grounds in the country.
On a launch pad in Florida, SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is ready for the first flight test of its new space capsule designed to carry astronauts into space.
The Falcon 9 is scheduled to take to the skies over Florida
Saturday morning. The rocket’s payload is the new Dragon capsule, the company’s
very first vehicle designed to take people to the International Space Station. Even
though the Crew Dragon capsule is meant for passengers, it will not carry
any people on board when Falcon 9 rocket blasts off.
The mission is called Demonstration-1 or DM-1 and the flight is
a test. It is only meant to show NASA that the Crew Dragon is space-worthy and
safe for future human crew members.NASA is particularly concerned
about this, because the very first people who will fly on the Crew Dragon capsule
will be the space agency’s astronauts. The Crew Dragon is a critical part of NASA
Commercial Crew Program, which has been developed by using privately-made spacecraft
to transport NASA astronauts to and from the space station.
The white, bell-shaped Dragon
capsule can carry up to seven astronauts and it is basically a more powerful
version of the SpaceX robotic cargo ship. When the capsule blasts off as, it
will travel to the International Space Station and dock there. The three
astronauts currently living in the space station will be able go
inside the hatch to load and unload cargo before the Dragon returns to Earth
and splashes down in the Atlantic Ocean.