Dubai Launches First Self-Driving Electric Abra

Dubai’s first autonomous electric wooden abra has hit the waters to support efforts to cut carbon emissions and boost the emirate’s self-driving transport goals. The revamped vessel has embarked on its first journey from Al Jadaf Station to the Festival City Station on Dubai Creek as part of a trial run.

The abra, which can carry eight passengers, was manufactured at Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority’s Al Garhoud Marine Maintenance Centre. The design aims to preserve the traditional look of the popular boats — which remain a familiar sight cruising on Dubai Creek — while embracing a transport vision of the future.

The Autonomous Electric Abra boasts superb features highlighted by zero-carbon emissions, lower operating and maintenance costs by 30 per cent, and the elimination of noise compared to diesel-powered models.

It is equipped with two electric motors with a maximum speed of seven knots [13kph]. It has an autonomous control system and four lithium batteries that ensure an operating time of seven hours.

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The National
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