The new face of transportation technology
This era is being driven by technology. Well now, this statement is going to be literally true with the emerging new technology of driverless lorries. Or more appropriately I should say, self-driving lorries.
These trucks are going to be a revolution in the history of transportation services. Not only will they increase the efficiency of the transportation services but they will also prove to be fuel savers. A point which the world is desperately in need of. These robotically managed lorries can ease the human’s work for him. This man-machine combination could go a long way if properly handled.
What is meant by Driver-less lorries:
Driverless lorries mean that there will be a platoon of trucks, the first one being driven by a human. The rest of the trucks will automatically follow the first one and be driven robotically. They are the new face of transportation services and if the project succeeds, it will be a huge milestone for the transportation services worldwide.
How can lorries be self-driven?
When writing about info on driverless lorries, the first question that comes to mind is what exactly do you mean by driverless lorries? The common man, like you, and like me, will not comprehend that how a lorry can just drive on its own? After all, this is not something that you could do in a closed four-wall scenario, driving lorries is the work of open roads, with traffic and real people around them. Then how can a robotic lorry be so efficient that it can drive on its own while not putting risk to the people and the general public around it?
The answer to this is quite simple. The driverless lorries work like a convoy. They travel in platoons, only the first placed truck in the platoon will be man-driven. The rest of them robotically follow the man driver’s lorry and they will do exactly the same driving actions like their leader human truck does! You see, even with self-driving lorries, man is the leader!
How do they work?
Let’s talk about how these lorries work and gather more info on driverless lorries. All the buses in the convoy are connected by Wi-Fi. This way all of their actions are cooperated and synchronized. If the leader truck applies brakes, all of the lorries will follow the leader truck and apply brakes equal in intensity. Change of acceleration and direction in the leader truck will be immediately followed by both of the other robotics trucks in the platoon.
Transport research laboratory:
The government has given the contract of this project to one of the mainstream transportation companies well known as Transport Research Laboratory – The future of transportation. They are going to perform the trials on the automated platooning.
Testing the driverless lorries:
The tests will take place in three stages. The first stage will only be the test drive. Where the platoons will be driven on test roads and routes. Without any traffic or real life public.
The next stage will be, where the convoy will be taken out on the real roads with real traffic. But only on selected routes and for a selected period of time. It has been announced that the real road tests will be performed on motorways or any other major road.
Helping the traffic and fuel consumption:
Let’s gather some more info on driverless lorries and see if they are really going to help with the traffic congestion. It has been established that these lorries can help in reducing congestion and work to create better road situations. But can this really work on the streets of UK or not, this is a question that is yet to be answered. Another aim in mind was fuel saving. These convoys can help reduce the fuel consumption by 10% and therefore it can prove to work wonder for our generation, and the generations to come! Reducing the fuel consumption, on a bigger level is something we should collectively work on for the better environment and a better future!
Could this mean a rise in unemployment?
As quickly and as widely the info on driverless lorries is spreading, another question that is arising is that, do driverless lorries mean a rise in unemployment? Will they leave the truck drivers jobless? By what we understand, this is not a great risk, because driverless lorries mean new technologies, new advancements, and new setups. There will be new slots available that can be filled in by the professional drivers who know the business, and are in love with their trucks!
A combination of three:
The driverless lorries will be put to work by the combination of three different companies. The manufacturers, the software providers, and the company that will be operating the whole system. It means that three different companies will work on this amazing project.
In case of an accident, however, it is said that the manufacturer will take more responsibility than the other ones because the trucks are being operated automatically. Which means, any fault resulting in an accident or a mishap, is more a fault of the manufacturer than being a fault of the driver.
How efficient will it prove to be:
While we can easily see that the driverless platoons can travel in deserted areas during the trials and tests. They can be driven on roads where no one has any business, but can they work efficiently on motorways and other busy roads where the traffic is real and where the people are real? Could this man-machine combination work in real life environment or is it just a showpiece for the empty roads? That is yet to be seen.