With every passing day, more and more innovative ideas and models for improving different tasks with robots and autonomous solutions are introduced all over the world. But it wouldn’t be wrong if one claimed that Dubai is the world’s laboratory or show room for practical technological advancements. Whether it is autonomous flying passenger drones, robotic mall cops and helpers, or even autonomous solar panel system integrated into housing, Dubai is always show-casing futuristic models to the massive influx of visitors, audience and students from all over the world.
The Dubai Roads and Transportation Authority, RTA, currently have their eyes set on the future; conducting workshops with a multitude of vehicle manufacturers, automotive and robotics engineers and service providers for production and testing of autonomous electric vehicles. Dubai is not only facilitating the industry technically, but also financially and in terms of infrastructure as they provide dedicated testing centers and services needed to materialize the relevant projects.
But one might think that workshops are provided by universities that research automotive engineering and automation technologies as well; and the automotive industry is resourceful enough to run tests so what is Dubai really offering?
Being a little cliché, Dubai is offering Dubai!
Yes, Dubai is offering their city. They have drafted goals, tasks, milestones and Gantt charts for each party undertaking the smart projects and are implementing the simulations or prototypes different groups and companies come up with, in their city.
Considering that Dubai is certainly looking forward to implementing autonomous electrically powered vehicles in their city, they are taking feasibility measures considering variables often overlooked in prototyping or technical simulations; variables like the risk of accident, the speed of Artificial Intelligence program, safety of the state properties and above all, the trustworthiness of the said vehicles to the users or customers and the safety of the said users and customers. Concerning self-driving vehicles, the technical testing standards and related technologies will ensure the primacy and pioneering role of Dubai in this class of vehicles, the Licensing Agency CEO said.
“It involved the provision of appropriate infrastructure to ensure the safety and security of using these vehicles, especially noting that this type of vehicles will become a reality and hit Dubai streets in the near future. The anticipated technological advancements and associated challenges warrant making such preparations.”
While RTA might be looking towards a futuristic Dubai, their future vision is not taking centuries to materialize. As a matter of fact, just two more decades. The autonomous vehicle implementation strategy involves benchmarks to be completed in short deadlines, the matter of a few years; along with some urgent measures, each and all of which are a part of a long-term plan to achieve certain benchmarks until 2040 – to ensure the building of a solid base that contributes to the fruition of the vision of Dubai Government and RTA. So RTA has some very realistic policies for Dubai as they are looking forward to establishing Dubai as the most inclusive city in terms of technical advancements in the automotive sector by 2040; after which the research is supposed to be efficient enough to improve upon the implemented technologies at a faster pace in a very convenient and suitable environment that will be the city of Dubai.
So Dubai is definitely taking this very seriously.
World-Class Smart Services and Infrastructure to Create Happiness
Well, they have established a government wing called Smart Dubai; entirely focusing on smart solutions and their feasible implementation in the city. Smart Dubai is aimed at utilizing novel innovations in modern technologies like Internet of Things (IoT), blockchain technology, Artificial Intelligence, cloud and smart data recording and transfer and of course, physical technologies like drones themselves. Their motto, as per their website is “To deliver world-class smart services and infrastructure to create happiness.“
Some of Smart Dubai’s projects or goals are:
- Dubai Blockchain Strategy
- Dubai AI Roadmap
- Dubai Data Initiative
- The Dubai Paperless Strategy
Each one of these projects are defined with set policies and yearly benchmarks to be met.
Just for the Dubai blockchain policy they have set strategic benchmarks each of which marks a certain success score towards a grand objective of making Dubai the Smartest city of the world; adopting Blockchain technology Dubai stands to unlock 5.5 billion dirham in savings annually in document processing alone — equal to the one Burj Khalifa’s worth of value every year as per the website dedicated to Smart Dubai.
Dubai is not an agriculturally fertile land, so what Smart Dubai is essentially doing is making it a technically fertile land; making it the hub of the modern smart solutions.