Technology

The E-Scooter that fixes itself before breaking down

After 5 years in development, the Cambridge, Massachusetts based company Superpedestrian is ready to ship it’s scooter for rental only. The company took matters into its own hands and developed a proof-of-concept e-scooter to show how its software could reduce, or even eliminate most maintenance issues. 

For a good introduction into the current state of e-scooter management, consider this recent Sifted interview with Bolt CEO Markus Villig. Villig, whose Estonian ride-sharing and food delivery company will be making its way to the U.S. soon, revealed that his e-scooters last for only about five months and aren’t profitable — a dilemma that’s all too familiar to most other scooter operators. 

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It’s precisely those issues that Superpedestrian hopes to solve. To that end, the company trained its e-scooter AI to detect failures and predict when something’s likely to go wrong. Sensors laid throughout the e-scooter allow it to monitor and instantly report any potential issues with the batteries, motor, brakes, or wheels. If, say, an e-scooter detects water or cooling problems in its battery, it’ll disconnect itself, and flag the system for a check-up. A technician can then go to the scooter and decide if a more intensive repair is needed, or if a simple battery swap will do.

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Thanks to its self-diagnostic software, Superpedestrian expects its e-scooters to last for more than 2,500 rides each, which is currently way more than any of the current crop littering our streets. And with a bigger, longer-lasting battery rated for up to 60 miles of riding, these e-scooters only need a charge once every three to seven days, instead of daily. 

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