Thursday, June 28, 2012

Another Item on the List of Future THings We Are Still Waiting For…

As usual, Google is working to invent a future that rocks. And the autonomous car is high on their list. At the moment Google's "self-driving cars" must always have someone seated at the controls, whether in Nevada -- which recently licensed Google's cars -- or elsewhere. Safety is clearly in the forefront of engineers' minds, but Google's approach is not the only effort in this area. In Europe, companies such as Volvo are working on other forms of the self-driving auto. In anticipation of autonomous vehicles hitting the road – and with advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) such as adaptive cruise control and collision avoidance already taking some control from drivers – the federal government and General Motors worked with the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute to conduct a study of driver behavior when they aren’t actively driving. The goal of the Limited Ability Autonomous Driving Systems study was to learn how drivers react when a car takes over primary tasks they’re used to performing. The Pegasus car system has been hovering in the wings for awhile. A company called Pegasus Holdings has been looking around for an area to build a test lab for a while, and has finally settled on the city of Hobbs in New Mexico. While the city itself, complete with traffic automation prototypes and even self-flushing toilets, will have no inhabitants, the project is expected to revitalize the surrounding area on the whole, an area which has been suffering since the 80s. The ghost town, called The Centre for Innovation, Testing and Evaluation or CITE, is to be 15 square miles and start out costing around $400 million. Testing using magnet-embedded roadways is one approach to providing sensor data to cars and trucks. Still waiting on Jet Packs, Tube Subway, and Pill Meals.

1 comment:

  1. Ford agrees...!/entry/ford-predicts-selfdriving-trafficreducing-cars-by-2017,4ff2df0f7af68a84dce1b084