Car “Platooning”

New Scientist (1/18, Graham-Rowe) reported on a road test of an automatic driving system in Sweden that showed “that a single car could join a platoon, be ‘enslaved’ by a lead truck” and become part of a convoy “and then exit safely.” As a result, “discussions are now under way to carry out tests on public roads in Spain next year.” The system, known as “platooning,” was tested by Volvo, “one of the partners of the Safe Road Trains for the Environment (SARTRE) Project” coordinated by the Cambridge engineering firm Ricardo UK, which has “€6.4 million of European Commission money” for it. The system would theoretically let “drivers read a book, surf the net or possibly even have a snooze while behind the wheel.” The SARTRE project aims to operate “platoons on public highways without having to change the infrastructure.”

Reposted from the 1/19/11 ASEE First Bell

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