June 27, 2018
Edmonton’s first electric, driverless lawn mowers are almost ready to roll. On June 21, the mowers became fully operational and are currently GPS mapping their assigned area, which can take up to two weeks. GPS will then be able to guide each mower with an invisible electric line to keep the vehicle in its determined area.
“The City is continuously looking for ways to use innovative technology to reduce our carbon footprint,” said Olivier Le Tynevez-Dobel, Supervisor, Turf and Sports Fields. “The autonomous mower navigates areas of any complexity—even ones with slopes and obstacles. It is the future of turf operations.”
The mowers can operate 24/7 in a variety of weather conditions. Compared to a conventional lawn mower, the autonomous mower is relatively light, weighing between 15 to 30 pounds. The mowers are rechargeable and will last from four to six hours depending on the density of the grass. Mowers are designed to return to their designated charging stations if they’re running low on power.
The mowers are able to detect objects from a distance and will lower their speed to avoid collisions. This makes them safe for kids, pets, and wildlife to be around. Since the mowers run on batteries, they don’t produce any emissions or consume a large amount of energy. They even leave the tiny grass clippings behind, which act as a natural fertilizer.