ATS Ultra Shuttle is battery powered and guided by lasers
First production ULTra PRT was delivered to Cardiff, Wales for testing in late 2007. It is self-guided by lasers and can easily accommodate four passengers and their luggage, including strollers and bicycles. 18 will operate between Heathrow's Business car park and the newly completed Terminal 5.

Under Construction: World's First Personal Rapid Transit

Advanced Transport System's ULTra PRT moves from virtual to real at London's Hearthrow Airport

By EV World

The long-labored dream of personal rapid transit or PRT is about to be born at London's Hearthrow Airport, considered the busiest airport in the world. Advanced Transport Systems Ltd. and its allied contractors are constructing the system, which will be operated by BAA and is scheduled for completion the spring of 2009.

Phase one of the £25m project will consist of 18 battery-powered, driverless shuttles vehicles operating on a 3.8km guide way linking the Business car park to Terminal 5, as depicted this BBC television report.

But the concept has much wider potential application beyond airport shuttle services. Proponents of PRT systems see them operating on business campuses and in urban settings, relieving street level congestion and air pollution, as well offering improved convenience and reduced dependence on fossil fuels.

As with any transit system, cost is always the issue and its impact on business during construction and after have to be weighed, but the idea of door-to-door convenience and not having to find a place to park a car has a lot of appeal.

More videos and photos of the program are available on the company web site.

Times Article Viewed: 9644
Published: 12-Jul-2008


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