Driverless Snowplows Ready to Clear Oslo Airport

Following trials early this year, driverless snowplows will begin working in earnest this winter at Norway’s busiest transport hub, Oslo Airport.

Last winter autonomous snowplows cleared snow from the runway at Fagernes Airport for the very first time and the project dubbed Yeti is now ready to go live at Norway’s biggest airport.

Autonomous snow clearing should allow airports to streamline activities and reduce flight delays in adverse winter conditions. Two autonomous vehicles will be going into live operation and clearing snow at one of the busiest airports in Scandinavia. Semcon, the company behind the technology, says its future objective is to maintain a fleet of ten autonomous snowplows.

“After having tested the control system at Fagernes Airport, we are really pleased that we are now able to launch this pilot scheme at Oslo Airport. Our aim is to complete 40 operations to ensure that the system is working as intended and see how we can develop it further. We are then hoping that more world airports will be interested in this technology,” says John Emil Halden, project manager at Semcon.

The company claims the Yeti project is the first of its kind to adapt such large machines for autonomous operation in wintry conditions.

This project has been developed by Yeti Snow Technology, co-owned by Semcon and Øveraasen, for Norwegian airport operator Avinor. The trials at Oslo Airport will begin in January 2019.

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in London. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_


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