One of Southeast Asia’s largest technology companies, Singapore Technologies Engineering (ST Engineering), has agreed to bring its expertise in autonomous vehicle (AV) platforms and smart transportation systems to Ashdod, Israel’s sixth largest city.
Signed at the 6th Annual Smart Mobility Summit in Tel Aviv, the agreement between ST Engineering and Ashdod covers various aspects of the city’s transportation network, including an intelligent transportation system (ITS) for roads, a fleet management system for buses, and the development and testing of autonomous buses.
The company’s suite of intelligent rail and road transport solutions have a strong track record and have been deployed in more than 20 cities worldwide. Using big data analytics and machine learning, STE’s systems will improve the service quality of the city’s transportation network and enhance commuter experience through real-time traffic and commuter sensing, supervisory and control capabilities, as well as an early warning for potential service disruptions.
During the Summit, ST Engineering also announced its plans to set up an R&D center in Israel to support its development of the Next Generation Autonomous Kit for buses. The R&D center will provide opportunities for project teams to share their knowledge and experience in advanced sensors and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies for AV platforms, as well as provide access to test sites for ST Engineering’s autonomous bus.
In June, ST Engineering collaborated with Israeli startup SafeRide Technologies on cybersecurity for its autonomous shuttles, and the company is keen to explore how its work on AVs can further benefit from the technology being developed by the country’s startup ecosystem.
ST Engineering has announced its plans to scale up its end-to-end competencies to pursue growth opportunities in smart city developments, which brought it revenue of US$726.4m (S$1b) in 2017, a figure it hopes to more than double by 2022. To date, STE has worked on more than 500 smart city projects in 70 cities, with intelligent traffic management systems developed by the company already in place in a number of cities worldwide, including China, Saudi Arabia and Kazakhstan.
In recent years, the Ashdod municipality has invested substantial resources in smart mobility proof of concepts and provided strong support to universities and international companies with a proving ground for new technologies. Ashdod has been part of a smart city initiative since 2014, and last year formed a joint venture with Israeli autonomous technology company Mobileye to develop advanced transportation systems.
“This pact is in line with the smart city ambitions of Ashdod. With the agreement, we can explore how we can bring some of the technologies we have in Singapore and see how we can apply them here,” explained Chew Men Leong, ST Engineering’s chief marketing officer, who signed the agreement in Tel Aviv. “We’re not stopping here. Beyond Ashdod, there may be other municipalities in Israel that are interested. It’s just the beginning.”