NTU to work with components supplier Schaeffler to develop smart personal mobility devices


SINGAPORE - Nanyang Technological University (NTU) signed an agreement on Monday (March 20) with automotive and industrial components supplier Schaeffler to develop smart mobility devices at a joint research lab.

To be housed at NTU's School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (EEE), the lab will receive $5 million in funding over the next three years.

The lab - dubbed the Schaeffler Hub for Advanced Research at NTU - will be dedicated to studying various aspects of personal urban mobility and intelligent transportation systems.

These include studying the behaviour of personal mobility device (PMD) users and developing "smart units" that will help enhance the safety and last-mile experience for PMDs.

"Our long-term vision is to develop Singapore as a hub for research and innovation for urban mobility," said Schaeffler Asia Pacific chief executive officer Andreas Schick.

Among the devices the lab will work on is an electric skateboard, with a control stick that allows riders to steer, accelerate and brake the device with only one hand. In the future, this e-board could also be equipped with a smart unit that warns users of potential hazards.

NTU and Schaeffler will also develop apps that will allow PMDs to wirelessly communicate with traffic infrastructure and other vehicles.

NTU EEE chair Professor Yoon Soon Fatt said the existing NTU-NXP Smart Mobility Test-Bed, with a campus-wide network of smart devices in cars, buses and traffic infrastructure, made the university the "perfect place to develop next-generation mobility devices".