Driverless Cars

August 28, 2017

As kids, we fantasized of the future and were fascinated by the idea of flying cars such as those in Harry Potter and other driverless cars. What once intrigued the human brain will soon become so common that no one will give much thought to it and would rather ponder upon how life was before the existence of driverless cars.


These cars which are expected to flood our streets in the upcoming years will bring a major change in the condition of traffic. The term traffic jam will become one of the past. Driverless cars will be monitored to a central computer tracking the motion of all the cars on the road by communicating will other driverless cars. In case of a gridlock the computer will override the driver and allow the traffic to move freely. In 2014 alone, there were 1.25 million deaths across the globe due to vehicle crashes and the figure increased by 7.2% the following year. These driverless cars are expected to eradicate road accidents completely by automatically detecting the possibility of an accident and immediately taking emergency measures. Other major problems that have contributed to a large number of accidents which will be brought to an end include drunk driving, falling asleep/ becoming drowsy while driving.


The efforts of Pentagon’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in order to achieve this goal are of utmost importance. Each year a contest is called with a grand prize of $1 million. In 2004 the contest had a shameful start as none of the participating cars were able to complete the track. However within only the next five years the cars managed to complete a much more challenging and demanding course going through sharp turns, narrow turns, obeying traffic laws, avoiding other cars while simulating traffic for a 60 mile course.


Together by communicating with each other, driverless cars can entirely avoid creating hours of traffic on-road


Since these cars are our future, it is vital that we understand how they work. In order to operate these cars will use radar sensors to detect nearby vehicles, cameras to detect traffic lights, pedestrians, road signs, vehicles and everything else present close by. The LIDAR sensors will be used to detect road ends and lane markings while the ultrasonic system will be helpful while parking. In order to travel the GPS system will be used, the slight distortion of frequency will be used to accurately identify the position of the car.  


Approximately 19 companies are working on autonomous cars which include giants such as Google, Tesla, Intel, Ford, BMW etc. With companies present who have already established this technology are now in the testing phase scientists predict not long before the streets will be full of cars driving themselves.   


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