Blog post -
In less than an hour we can transport 500 passengers 1200 kilometers in a suburb in Stockholm – without a single vehicle on the roads.
From point A to B in a shared Autonomous Vehicle. The assurance that a vehicle will always be available to pick you up and drop you off at your desired location on time – NEVS fleet management system makes it possible, and our traffic simulation and optimization team can simulate operation of the service 24 hours a day with 5 different scenarios in parallel equal to around 1 million kilometers per month!
NEVS mobility ecosystem consists of several components, where the vehicle itself and the app for ordering a ride are the most visible. Behind the scenes, a team of specialists is working with fleet management. We call it KORO, which means “heart” in Esperanto, and it is a fitting term because the fleet management system orchestrates the flow of vehicles on the streets pretty much like the heart pumps out blood in our blood vessels.
NEVS fleet management system gives operational support for traffic management, on-site fleet assistance, and vehicle management to guarantee a reliable product experience and scalable and efficient operations.
- Traffic management; monitoring of the ongoing missions and the traffic situations. Support in-vehicle surveillance and user interaction.
- On-site fleet assistance; smart solutions for charging, parking and cleaning of vehicle and on-site maintenance.
- Vehicle management; monitoring of vehicle technical condition, vehicle diagnostic and over the air (OTA) updates. Also support to predictive maintenance and spare part management.
To optimize the service, NEVS created a virtual world in which we can test our algorithms and run our service for millions of hours without incurring any operational costs.
Clip 1: In this co-simulation of the factory area at NEVS in Trollhättan we show the traffic simulation tool in the upper right corner, the vehicle simulation to the left and what the Autonomous Drive software with camera, Lidar and sensors can detect (lower right corner).
Kedarnath Moparthi, who is part developer and Product Owner for the simulation, leans forward towards the screen where a myriad of cars, buses and other vehicles move with high pace in the streets.
“We have created a digital twin to a city environment by uploading real maps with road network, infrastructure etc. to our simulation tool. We then add traffic volumes, traffic lights, travel patterns and for instance buses and trams that are running according to the timetable in the real world.”
By making the digital twin as close to reality as possible, the NEVS team can simulate where traffic congestion will occur and which charging station to choose. They can also simulate how passengers move around in the city, what they are doing and ultimately whether they prefer to travel with the vehicle in private mode or for instance a family mode.
Kedarnath smiles and says:
“Now the really interesting part starts. In this virtual world we now introduce our fleet of autonomous vehicles. Our vehicles are designed for sharing in a range of modes from a private setting to a social setting. By replacing passenger cars with our shared vehicles, we can simulate how traffic congestion is reduced due to less vehicles in the streets. We can test thousands of different scenarios and do so 24 hours a day, seven days a week. By doing so, we can also optimize the fleet so that we have the right number of vehicles in an area to ensure that customers do not have to wait for a ride, while also avoiding having too many vehicles, which would add unnecessary costs.”
The NEVS team can simulate many aspects, and one is the use of electricity.
“When it comes to things like electricity consumption and battery capacity, we can monitor each simulated vehicle individually in real time. We can then see when and where they would need to be charged, which is valuable information for city planning in terms of charging infrastructure. Where are charging poles needed and do they have to be fast chargers or are slow chargers enough?” Kedarnath continues.
Clip 2: Dashboard showing how a fleet of vehicles can be monitored in real time. Following speed, battery capacity etc. help us to judge for instance when vehicles need charging and ideal location for charging poles.
At the end of the day, traffic simulation means that NEVS can collect a large amount of traffic data long before any real vehicles are on the road. The economic aspects are enormous but also the safety aspects are important. Many mistakes that could lead to accidents in the real world in the worst-case scenario can now be corrected in the virtual world and thus avoided in the real world later.