Ireland’s first e-scooter trial begins

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Ireland’s first e-scooter trial launched on 20 July and will run across the five campuses of Dublin City University.

This e-scooter research pilot will involve the collaboration of four organisations: e-scooter operator Tier; Irish micromobility technology platform Luna; the Insight SFI Research Centre for Data Analytics; and Smart DCU, a district of Smart Dublin.

As part of the project, Tier and Luna are equipping a fleet of 30 scooters with advanced computer vision technology, allowing DCU-based Insight researchers to explore a new source of smart city data.

With Luna’s technology, Tier e-scooters are capable of running pedestrian detection and lane segmentation algorithms, allowing the vehicles to understand how many people are in their path, as well as preventing vehicles from being used on footpaths.

The trial comes in parallel with moves to make e-scooters street-legal across Ireland.

Speaking at the launch Minister Hildegarde Naughton, said: “Ireland is truly leading the way in the space of the use of e-scooters, and I very much look forward to seeing this pilot get moving across DCU campuses.

“This is an interesting and exciting time in transport – the innovation and momentum is palpable here today. It is my job now and the job of government to play our part and progress the necessary legislation required for the safe use of e-scooters in Ireland.

“I look forward to seeing this pilot progress across campus and I am particularly interested in learning of its outcomes and insights which I am certain will inform us in further progressing legislation in this space.”

According to the pilot, the purpose of the research project is to simultaneously improve e-scooter safety and to explore the Smart City possibilities associated with computer vision equipped micromobility vehicles and the valuable data they can generate on behalf of all stakeholders.

Fred Jones, Tier’s regional general manager for Northern Europe, added: “It is an exciting opportunity for detailed research on smart city applications of e-scooters as well as modal shift, as we partner with Luna and Insight to help the University to reduce its carbon footprint and offer a more sustainable, safer first and last mile public transport solution.

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