Ever since we can remember, driverless cars were only a part of science fiction movies. However, autonomous driving slowly became a dream come true and lead us to this moment in time when it’s safe to say the future is finally here.
Autonomous self-driving vehicles don’t require a human to operate the vehicle. Whether you own a car or a truck with this ability, driverless vehicles are empowered with sensors and software control, which navigates and drives the vehicle.
Although fully operational autonomous vehicles don’t yet exist, partially self-driving vehicles are now out there on the roads. Still, considering the rapid development of technology, it is just a matter of time as to when all of us will have a chance to comfortably settle in one of these smart cars and relax while the vehicle takes over and reduces the everyday stresses of commuting to work.
How does Autonomous Driving Work
Autonomous vehicles are packed with software and sensors. The system is based on a variety of sensors acting as a radar to create internal maps of the surroundings. Afterward, the software takes charge and processes these inputs, develops a path, and sends further instructions to steering, braking, and accelerating controls.
On the other hand, with semi-autonomous vehicles, the driver has to occasionally take control, especially if the system faces some performance issues. While fully autonomous vehicles don’t even require you to control the steering wheel.
What can We Expect in 2017?
Last year, Uber presented the driverless experiment and developed autonomous prototypes which use a variety of sensors, like sixty-four laser beams, to develop a map. Contrary to Google prototypes, their vehicles used radars, lasers, sonar, and high-quality cameras in different stages of development.
While other major self-driving technology experts including Tesla, Nissan, and many more keep on working on driverless upgrades, some manufacturers have already released self-driving cars on public roads. For example, Volvo gave the citizens of Gothenburg a chance to experience this type of driving and the rumours of the launch of a robot taxi could be realised soon.
Benefits of Autonomous Driving
A recent UK study implies that autonomous driving will transform our quality of life. Of course, these changes will be for the better, since it’s expected to increase the urban space by 15%-20%. Among other advantages, saving the planet will come in many forms:
- Improved Safety – Regarding the road traffic, although the UK is one of the safest countries in the world the number of car accidents continues to rise. Since self-driving vehicles would be less prone to accidents, the road safety will be greater than ever. Drunken driving and sleep deprived drivers will be able to rest, while their driverless vehicle takes them to the desired location.
- Cleaner Environment – Considering that these vehicles will work on electricity, it’s safe to say that transportation emissions will be drastically reduced, leaving a cleaner environment, free of common gasoline toxins.
- Better Lifestyle – With a vehicle that can drive itself, disabled individuals will be able to experience the joy of driving. In addition, their lifestyle will improve, since they will get more freedom to be independent.
The future is finally here, and it’s here to stay and improve our quality of life. With self-efficient vehicles, the roads will be safer, the environment healthier, and anyone will be able to sit in the driver’s seat without fear.