The U.S. has long been the land of the automobile. We design cities around parking lots, create suburbs “within driving distance” of major metropolises and have highways that span coast to coast. The car is an undeniable part of America’s history and has shaped how much of it looks today.
In the next critical move toward the commercialization of autonomous vehicles, this week General Motors announced an historic deal with SoftBank Vision Fund. The world’s largest tech and ridesharing investor will invest $2.25 billion in GM Cruise, our recently formed majority owned subsidiary. With the addition of $1.1 billion from GM, the funds will drive large AV commercialization beginning in 2019.
ANN ARBOR—The added weight, electricity demand and aerodynamic drag of the sensors and computers used in autonomous vehicles are significant contributors to their lifetime energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new study.
However, when savings from the driving efficiencies associated with self-driving vehicles are factored into the equation, the net result is a reduction in lifetime energy use and associated greenhouse gas emissions of up to 9 percent compared to the conventional vehicles examined in the University of Michigan-led study.
In the second installment of the six-part video series, “The Spark of Innovation,” Alexandra Heckler and Josh Laredo discuss how Booz Allen Hamilton became involved in the auto industry’s quest to define and understand the cyber opportunities and threats surrounding cars of today and tomorrow.
When she was six, Alexandra learned from her father how to take apart and rebuild a ’68 Corvette. “In hindsight, I think ‘my dad was trying to teach me to solve a problem,’” Alexandra recalls. “To figure out ‘what can I do to make it better?’”
Data collection and the processing power needed to support autonomous driving are huge areas of focus for development. Companies are investing heavily in driverless technologies, evidenced by news that Intel Corp. is acquiring Mobileye, an autonomous driving technology leader whose portfolio includes machine learning, road mapping, sensors, and data analytics among other technologies.
Nearly 1.3 million people around the world die from automobile accidents every year, while another 20 million to 50 million become injured or disabled. Human error plays a large role in these numbers, and research shows that autonomous vehicles may soon provide a solution to car casualties.
The glamour of the limousine is undeniable - who wouldn't want to be shuttled about town without a care in the world? Traffic, parking, sobriety? Somebody else's problem! With the introduction of the self-driving car, limo luxury could become pretty commonplace. As with many new technologies, though, self-driving cars bring up myriad sustainability, legal. and ethical questions.