Sharjah: A 2.5-km-long suspended track that will be used to test a driverless cargo pod will be completed in six months at the Sharjah Research, Technology and Innovation Park (SRTI Park), according to the developer of the SkyWay project.
The construction of the hanging rail will pave the way for the development, testing and certification of the suspended transport system before it is marketed on a global scale, a spokesperson from SkyWay GreenTech, the Belarus engineering company behind the project’s development, said on Wednesday.
The suspended transport system, which includes unicars (for passengers) and unicont (for cargo), is in its experimental phase and SkyWay GreenTech has already started the construction at site to build the hanging test tracks at the SRTI Park located inside the campus of the American University in Sharjah (AUS).
In October last year, His Highness Dr Shaikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, inspected the launch of the experimental phase of SkyWay project. The Sharjah Ruler was shown a driverless passenger skypod that ran on a 400m-long hanging rail.
Hussain Al Mahmoudi, CEO of SRTI Park, noted that the SkyWay Project is part of the “comprehensive plan aimed at transforming the city of Sharjah into a sustainable futuristic city.”
SkyWayGreenTech said the skypods can solve transport problems of big cities by creating high-rise building networks, where skypods can move above ground using hanging rails.
The company added that construction and operation of the suspended transport system is significantly lower compared to existing transport solutions. It also ensures safety, rational use of land, and minimal environmental damage.
In terms of speed and capacity, unicars or urban light skypods can run up to 150-km/h carrying 2-14 passengers per pod while high capacity Unibus that can be used for intercity transport can accommodate up to 80 passengers.
The cargo transport, meanwhile, can carry up to 25 tons at a speed of 36km/hr. It is intended for transportation of marine freight containers with nominal length of 20 and 40 feet by string truss structure. Loading and unloading of containers into the skypod can be carried out both in special terminals by means of portal bridge crane or reach-stacker.
SkyWayGreenTech said there is a potential to connect Khalid, Hamriya and Khor Fakkan ports to Sharjah city center via hanging cargo rail.
Skypod for passengers
- Unicar - run up to 150-km/hr carrying 2-14 passengers per pod
- Unibus - can accommodate up to 80 passengers at speed of 150-km/hr
- Suspended cargo transport
- Unicont - can carry up to 25 tons at a speed of 36-km/hr.
- nominal length of 20 by 40 feet
- Loading and unloading of containers can be done by portal bridge crane or reach-stacker.
- The hanging cargo rail can connect Khalid, Hamriya and Khor Fakkan ports to Sharjah city centre