1st time Autonomous snowploughs are used to clear runway

21 March 2018

We all perceive and think of Scandinavian countries as progressive, open minded and generally not afraid to take that leap forward. They epitomize Europe’s society-first democracy and capitalism. They lead the world in many endeavours of Human development, science and social development.

Every winter, problems with snow lead to many delayed flights and stranded passengers all over the world. Autonomous snowploughs have now been tested for the first time at an airport in Norway as a way of clearing snow more effectively.

Swedish company Semcom, is the first company to clear snow from a runway using autonomous snowploughs. The snowploughs are regular machines fitted with 4G communications and GPS with an aim to increase efficiency as well as minimise delays. In March 2018, the above was put to the test in Oslo, with great success as you can see in the video below.

This is another great example of the usage of autonomous technology and as Markus Granlund of Semcom noted: “This is a good example of how autonomous vehicles can increased profitability and add value for people”

The machines were developed by Yeti Snow Technology, an outfit co-owned by Swedish product development firm Semcon and Norwegian equipment manufacturer Øveraasen. The result is the first driverless snowploughs which, at 20 metres long and 5.5 metres wide, are able to clear an area of 357,000 square meters every hour.

The test took place at Fagernes Airport in Leirin, Norway, 200 kilometres north of Oslo. While the British Isles and parts of Europe have been badly affected by the ‘Beast from the East’ storm, Scandinavia has always had a healthier relationship with snow.

While an extraordinary amount of attention and media focus is pointed to accidents, trial errors and driverless technology in the form of passenger cars, advances such as those demonstrated in Oslo a few days ago demonstrate the many benefits to autonomy can be found away from the highway.

Article by Nicholas Kalavas for Y-Mobility

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