Autonomous driving has been becoming popular in today’s world. While Google may be company which is often in headlines for driverless cars, it turns out that there are many others out there who are trying out the concept and utilizing it to some very unique uses. Project SARTRE is one such example.
SARTRE stands for Safe Road Trains For The Environment. The project has been funded by European Commission and is intended to test ways to enhance motorway safety and also adopt more environment-friendly driving practices.
The basic notion behind the idea is to test that can autonomous cars, placed in a caravan, can take the lead of a man-driven car and then keep on its trail without going out of control. The project is currently taking a test run, which is more of a public road test. The caravan comprises of three autonomous cars which are in the lead of a vehicle driven by a professional driver. The autonomous cars are all set with a lot of sensors, cameras and laser guidance system, to keep them right behind the leading vehicle.
The project had been undertaken as far back ass 2009. Until now, the project was being tested on a very limited scale, specifically on the private testing tracks of Volvo. This is the first public road test of SARTRE. According to European Commission, if cars adopt a caravan-model of driving, the way it is being done by the three autonomous cars in this public test, this can reduce fuel consumption by a significant 20%.
Moreover, imagine eating lunch on the driver seat and attending calls without any fear of the car going out of control. This project can translate into some very useful applications for common users.
Source: SARTRE Project
Courtesy: The Verge