NEWS – Looking into the future, what will driving look like, and what environmental impacts will our planet be facing? These days, we are causing a deep impact on our environment with the continual burning of fossil fuels and single-passenger-filled vehicles.
However, it’s the vision of many environmental stewards to see automated cars take over our roadways, which would ultimately take drivers out of the equation and create a move toward automated transportation systems. While you won’t be forced to ride with other people on public transit, your vehicle could very well be “driven” by a computer rather than by your own two hands and feet. Check out some trends in store for the near future.
The New Green Machines?
Researchers and developers see the opportunity to implement green and clean technologies when designing future driverless cars. It appears to only make sense to produce cars that emit lower amounts of greenhouse gases that contribute to the smog and pollution we experience today. While electric and hybrid vehicle technologies are commonplace today, researchers are looking to make them better and more sustainable.
In an attempt to further reduce emissions, there will be a large focus on shared ownership and a push to deter people from sole ownership of vehicles. This would enable the public to use rental-based systems available through various smartphone apps. Imagine getting off work, pulling up the app, and signaling the closest available vehicle to take you somewhere. That ride may include another passenger or even your family, who scheduled a ride with you ahead of time. Not only will it reduce emissions, but it would also save you on car ownership and gas costs.
Pump the Brakes on Emissions
Up to this point, studies on autonomous vehicles have indicated we can expect to see lower vehicle emissions due to their ability to not brake as much. Because of how vehicles are manufactured today, we tend to brake and accelerate quite often due to a host of different traffic signs and signals on our roadways. With automated cars, less braking will be required due to the vehicle’s knowledge of traffic patterns and traffic regulations expected to be in place once these vehicles hit the market. Driverless vehicles are anticipated to have built-in GPS units, allowing them to acknowledge and travel to the best routes with minimal braking and engine performance.
How Far Off are Autonomous Cars?
Driverless cars are still a vision of the future, so those fast approaching age 16 should still make time to study for their driver’s test. That’s not to say there are not huge strides being made in driverless technology. Toyota has set aside four miles of testing roads to test out real-life scenarios that could occur once driverless cars take the open road.
The British government has also taken a particular interest in these vehicles’ research and development by investing $623 million into the technology. Though the shift toward relinquishing control over our own transportation may initially be a bit shocking, it may make for a brighter future for our air and environmental quality.