The Government of the Basque Autonomous Community (region) and the IK4-TEKNIKER R+D centre have today signed an agreement to collaborate on developing the technology for and demonstrating the viability of a solution to detect objects in parts of the surface-level automated metro network.
The signing took place at IK4-TEKNIKER's headquarters in Eibar (Gipuzkoa, Basque Country) and was attended by the Minister for Housing, Public Works and Transport of the Government of the Basque Autonomous Community, Iñaki Arriola, and the CEO of IK4-TEKNIKER, Alejandro Bengoa.
It is about creating and specifying a system to assist driverless operation that offers high levels of safety by detecting objects on the track through the combining of various 2D-3D vision and laser technologies.
The agreement will be in force for 12 months.
So the ETS-Eusko Trenbide Sarea (Basque Railway Network) public authority, which manages railway infrastructure, will be making available to IK4-TEKNIKER the use of the necessary facilities to run the project, while IK4-TEKNIKER undertakes to develop the project and meet whatever expenses are directly or indirectly necessary.
The signing of this agreement will enable the ETS, the authority that reports to the department of Transport of the Government of the Basque Autonomous Community, to meet a dual objective:
IK4-TEKNIKER's Smart Autonomous Systems Unit specialises in multi-sensor analysis involving laser vision or ultrasound, and in its application in the detection of obstacles and self-navigation.
In the project for the Government of the Basque Autonomous Community objects will be detected by means of cameras and laser scanners deployed within the track infrastructure; this could require the use of multiple devices of this type along a stretch of a single kilometre. The combination of the two systems enables the limitations of each one on its own to be overcome; these limitations are caused by the inherent noise in the sensors and the lack of certainty due to changing environmental conditions.
With experience spanning nearly 30 years in research into applied technology and its transfer to companies, IK4-TEKNIKER has achieved a high degree of specialisation in four major areas (Precision Engineering and Mechatronics, Surface Engineering, Production and Automation Engineering, and Manufacturing Technologies), which enables it to put its state-of-the-art technology at the service of any kind of task.