Thursday, February 22, 2024

UP, DOST bare public launch of ‘green’ transport projects

The University of the Philippines (UP) in Diliman and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) have officially launched two projects aimed at providing eco-friendly transportation systems to the state university’s sprawling campus.

UP collaborated with the DOST”s Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD) for the development and eventual rollout of the transport projects.

The first project is called “Intelligent Electric Transportation Network” or “IntElect” which is basically a fleet of electric tricycles and a UP-developed monitoring system to track, monitor, and provide data on these e-vehicles or EVs.

Prior to the public launch, a test run of the EV project was conducted in UP Diliman and in Cagayan State University.

Both campuses were given 10 e-trikes from the Department of Energy, and prior to the public launch, the EVs were tested for months.

Lew Andrew Tria, program leader of IntElect project, said there are currently 10 e-trikes which will be deployed in UP Diliman.

A major part of the IntElect project is a ride-sharing and guidance system, which will “compute” the optimal locations of charging stations in the area.

He said that one of the major developments made by project proponents is that charging time for these EVs is now significantly shorter.

A mobile app for ride hailing was also developed. The e-trikes are initially expected to service UP personnel, but can be expanded to service more passengers in the near future.

The second initiative publicly launched by UP Diliman is the “UP Bike Share” program which is said to be “a fourth-generation bike-sharing system that is monitored through a wireless tracking sensor.”

The UP Bike Share currently has 40 bikes situated around 10 stations in the Diliman campus.

Designed primarily for students, the bike share program also comes with a mobile application providing monitoring and security features.

Students need to register and pay a fee of P50 a month or P150 per semester. Once registered, a student can go to the designation station, select a bike, and text the server with the format “B<going> to <destination><bike number>.” A code will then be sent to the student which will enable him or her to use the bike and lock it. 

Nestor Michael Tiglao, the project leader of the UP Bike Share program, said 100 students have already registered.

Tiglao said one of the “early problems” encountered during the development of the bike share program was security. But with advances in monitoring technologies, this issue was already addressed.

He said one of the security features of the bikes is that they automatically lock if they are taken out of the UP Diliman campus.


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