Singapore gives green light to Enway autonomous road sweeper

  • January 25, 2021
  • Steve Rogerson

An autonomous sweeper from Berlin start-up Enway has been approved for public road use in Singapore.

Enway is a software manufacturer of self-driving utility vehicles. It has been working with Swiss sweeper manufacturer Bucher Municipal and other partners testing autonomous street cleaning in Singapore since 2019.

Singapore’s National Environment Agency (NEA) has started trial runs of autonomous road sweepers on public roads to make the city-state cleaner and more sustainable. The autonomous compact sweeper Donner, developed by a consortium led by Enway and Bucher Municipal, has passed the Land Transport Authority’s approval test for autonomous vehicles for use on public roads.

Donner is based on Bucher Municipal’s fully electric CityCat 2020 EV. In cooperation with Nanyang Technological University, Sembwaste and Wong Fong Engineering Works, the team in Singapore adapted the existing Enway technology for use in public domains.

The project is part of the NEA’s efforts to drive innovation and diffusion of technology and improve the environmental services industry. Autonomous technology for street cleaning can improve productivity in supply operations and optimise road use. The project is supported by the National Robotics Programme Office under the Autonomous Environmental Service Vehicles for Singapore grant.

The self-driving sweepers are monitored remotely at a teleoperations centre, where cleaning routes and times are determined and adjusted if necessary. During the trial runs, the autonomous sweepers must have a safety driver on board to meet the strict operating protocols. Tests on public roads will be conducted in a progressive manner and progress to regular timings during which the autonomous sweeper cleans parallel to everyday traffic.

Enway was founded in Berlin in 2017 and has 35 employees in Berlin and Singapore. The company developed technology for high-precision autonomous machines, with which sweepers clean streets, factories or large warehouses independently. The vehicles react dynamically to changes and obstacles.