Thursday, 1 June 2017

Prepare Yourself for Sweet Luxury of Riding in a Robocar

RoboCar
The idea of a self-propelled vehicle has existed for decades, but the car companies are only now approaching the vision. Also, data services like Google are working on the Robo car. But the way to the Robo car is quite still far.

Cars in the advertising always have free travel. What the advertising does not show: column traffic and pure boredom behind the wheel. Who does not want a chauffeur in professional traffic? In fact, drivers can soon leave the hands off the wheel and the feet off the pedals. This year, the BMW i3 will be the first held up in traffic jam on the road, which will be able to take over the running tasks up to 40 km/h. In the next Audi A8 generation, an autopilot is to accelerate, brake and steer up to 60 km / h.

Audi has unveiled the auto pilot-driven Robo car as part of the Consumer Electronics Show 2013 (CES) in Las Vegas. Also in the case of parking, you can save time and effort in the future: simply activate and disembark the park pilots. The driverless Robo car is automatically removed from the car park central computer by Wlan to the next free parking space.

The predecessors of the 1950s

"If we like it or not, slowly, but surely, the robots take over the job of the car driver," popular science cited as early as 1958. At that time, the first cruise control was introduced in the Chrysler Imperial. The system was able to keep the speed constant, but by no means recognize the traffic situation.

It was only after the turn of the millennium that robotic vehicles launched more and more sensors into the world: the research agency of the US military Darpa organized several races for driverless cars. In 2005 the victorious VW Touareg "Stanley" found its way independently through the Mojave desert. However, the Darpa had planted a zone of comfort to the electron brain through the human-free area: low earth walls as roadsides helped the radar, video and laser sensors to orient themselves. In addition, the route was set by nearly 3000 GPS points. Every 70 meters, a satellite-based road mark kept the scouts on course. In the ranking of intelligent systems, these rolling robots had not earned the predicate autonomously.

Measurement by laser scanner

"We have learned how to measure the edge of the road using a laser scanner in preparation for the Grand Challenge," explains Bjorn Giesler, who is responsible for driving the Robo car at Audi. In the meantime, cars nearer to the series are also available without drivers in the US state of Nevada. Audi was the first Robo car manufacturer to have the license to test the autopilot in regular road traffic. "How close we are to the show is to see the size of our laser scanner," said Ricky Hudi at CES. The Head of Development Electrical / Electronic at Audi presented a hand-held sensor that fits easily into any vehicle front.

This is a huge difference to the research vehicles of Google and Lexus that are on the road in California: their powerful laser scanner for the Robo car cost as much money as a fully equipped luxury limousine.

All the cars work on automated driving

The driver thinks the car is steering - as futuristic as this form of movement can also be: All leading car manufacturers are working with high pressure on the gradual introduction of automated driving Robo car. "The driver is only relieved of the burden on long, fatiguing routes on the motorway or in traffic situations through the system.

The sensor technology does not yet create the complex urban traffic or even critical situations on the highway ", explains the BMW developer Dirk Wisselmann all too euphoric expectations. There are also still high legal hurdles for fully automated driving Robo car :" Every driver should be able to reach everyone Time to control his car as well as to ensure timely and appropriate diligence, "says the 1968 Vienna Convention.

This also applies to the cars of Audi, Google, Lexus, Bosch, Continental and others that have been driving through California and Nevada for months. Each test Robo car has at least one passenger who constantly monitors the operation of all systems. The human being therefore remains the responsibility and must be able to take over the task at any time. Therefore, the system also ensures by camera that the pilot behind the wheel is neither sleeping nor impotent. If, for example, the traffic jam occurs and the traffic flows again at more than 60 km / h, the driver of that Robo car is asked to take over. In addition, the function is only available on the motorway, where there is no city-waggle with traffic and unpredictable pedestrians.

Traffic is coming into the cloud

Always on the road and on the road: In the future, the traffic in real-time will be reflected in a data cloud (cloud). Obviously the Volkswagen Group does not want to leave such data services to Internet companies like Google. "We will use the cloud as an external sensor for driving," promises Ricky Hudi.

Only the swarm-in-the-spot of the networked vehicles can control the traffic situation so precisely that the driver can turn to other activities without risk. "I assume that most vehicles will have a communication unit as a link to the cloud in ten years," says Hudi, "because we have a huge advantage with the large fleet of Volkswagen Group vehicles."

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