Imagine getting into your car and typing in a location into your vehicle's interface. It will then drive you to wherever you are going, while you are surfing the web online slots, taking a nap, or reading a book. The future of transportation is about to change everything, and self-driving cars are going to be the next big innovation.
In 2009, Google started working on its self-driving car project, which had the goal of driving across a hundred miles of uninterrupted routes.
What Is a Self-Driving Car?
It's based on an ordinary car, which can be driven by ordinary road users without any problems. Technically, it's possible to make any car driverless. The only difference is the autonomy of the vehicle, which we will talk about later.
The laser rangefinder, which is placed on the roof of the car. It is the heart of the drone, because it shoots its lasers left and right in order to generate a 3D map within a radius of up to 100 meters. The data is synchronized with the maps in order to comply with traffic rules and know where to go.
So far, at least four radars are installed on drones. They are installed two of each in the front and rear. They are needed to determine the range of objects, their trajectory and speed. Radar emits radio impulses, which are reflected from obstacles and transmitted to the receiving antenna. In essence, radars are the eyes of a car. Unlike people, they are also on the back of the head (on the rear bumper).
A GPS receiver that allows the car to understand where it is at all.
Necessary to detect traffic lights signals, approaching objects at a dangerous distance. Usually install at least one camera in the rearview mirror. On average, there are from 1 to 3 video cameras in cars.
Basic Technology Already In Use
Driver assistance systems include various features such as blind-spot detection, automatic braking, and lane departure prevention. According to an insurance industry organization, these systems can reduce rear-end crashes by 27%. They also help prevent injuries in these types of accidents.
The development of these systems was quickly followed by the introduction of technologies that allow cars to self-park. These systems were able to do so by steering into a free parking space without the driver having to manually control the brake and accelerator. In addition, Mercedes-Benz introduced the Drive Pilot, which gives the driver the ability to take over the steering and speed of the car in certain circumstances.
The concept behind self-driving cars is simple: build a car that can monitor all the surrounding objects. If it senses that it is about to get into a collision, it should automatically stop and take the necessary steps to avoid hitting the other vehicle.
In order to fully implement these ideas, the car's computers should be able to understand all the driving rules. One of the main features of this technology is LIDAR, which is a type of light detection that is used to estimate the distance to another object.
A Drastic Change
Due to the rapid emergence and evolution of new technologies, it is widely believed that car-related businesses face various issues when it comes to implementing the innovations related to self-driving cars. For instance, who needs a car that is made with heavy-gauge steel and eight airbags if accidents are rare? According to experts, the loss of revenue that car-related enterprises will suffer due to technological changes could be billions of dollars.
One of Google's goals is to make car-sharing more convenient by reducing the number of cars on the road. According to the company, people would no longer need to own a car if they can easily order a car through its app and it will drive up to their destination in minutes.
A Manufacturing Revolution
If car-related businesses are able to capitalize on the technological changes brought about by self-driving cars, then they could potentially see a spike in the annual global sales of new and used cars. However, this would be short-lived as the popularity of sharing would reduce sales.
Aside from the various features that car-related businesses will need to implement in order to fully implement the innovations related to self-driving cars, other factors such as the interior and the drivetrain will also change. Some of these changes could even be optional. For instance, if a person wants to take a front-facing seat in a self-driving car, it could become an option.
In the US, parking spaces and parking lots that cover around a third of the country's land area can be repurposed. This could result in temporary downward pressure on the market value of real estate, but, however, the development of more eco-friendly urban areas. Cities could additionally benefit from the reduction in the number of cars on the road. Various government agencies could additionally be able to reallocate a portion of the approximately $200 billion that they spend annually on roads and highways.
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© by David Burgos 2022