Computational creativity and the future of AI

Autonomous Vehicles

Oshkosh diesel-electric hybrid concept for Baja 1000 desert race

It has been an exciting year for hybrid power train development in major racing series, with the teams deciding that KERS will return to Formula One in 2011, the growing success of the Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid in the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup and now the news that Oshkosh Corporation will be fielding a 400 bhp hybrid diesel-electric Light Concept Vehicle in the Baja 1000 desert race which begins later this week in Mexico. Perhaps even more interesting than the hybrid powertrain is its TAK-4 suspension which offers 20 inches of independent wheel travel.  Read More

Off the beaten track

Fancy a roadtrip? Don't have a driver? No problem! The team from VisLab have just completed a journey from across two continents in two autonomous vans – the longest single trip undertaken by an autonomous vehicle. Over the 8,000 miles (13,000km) there were only a few technical hiccups and it seems that border officials, the police, journalists and tired crew members were a bigger hazard than the tough road conditions.  Read More

Lockheed Martin's autonomous Squad Mission Support System carries gear and charges batteri...

The US Army’s Nett Warrior program involves equipping dismounted soldiers with wearable battle tracking electronics in order to increase situational awareness and reaction time and reduce the risk of “friendly fire”-related accidents. One Nett Warrior-equipped Infantry Brigade Combat Team requires a collection of batteries weighing 155 pounds (70 kg) for one 24-hour mission, and could consume the power of 140 batteries per day. That’s a lot of gear, and is the reason why aerospace firm Lockheed Martin first developed the Squad Mission Support System (SMSS) in 2005. An autonomous all-terrain vehicle that can follow troops in the field, the SMSS carries batteries, packs and other gear, and it now also serves as a mobile charging station.  Read More

AUVs, ROVs key to bringing back new Titanic images and data

Last week the RMS Titanic, Inc. finally finished up an unprecedented photography expedition at the site of the sunken Titanic off the coast of Newfoundland. The team obtained high-definition and even 3D images which surpassed any photos taken of the wreck site to date. They completed the mission just in time too, with Hurricane Igor ushering them back to shore, like a cranky museum security guard scolding you for taking too many pictures.  Read More

One of VisLab's VIAC autonomous vans

As of July 29th, two electric vans embarked from Belgrade, Serbia on a three-month road trip to Shanghai, China. Along the way, they will have to manage stop-and-go city traffic, extremes in weather, and even some stretches of off-road driving. All this would be a great test for their electric drive system, but the researchers from Italy’s VisLab put this expedition together mainly to test something else: their driverless vehicle technology. While each of the vans in the VisLab Intercontinental Autonomous Challenge (VIAC) will have passengers in the back seats, ready to take control if necessary, they will normally have no one at the steering wheel.  Read More

The MOATV could carry troops' supplies in the field

BAE Systems’ Multi-Operated All-Terrain Vehicle (MOATV) is a semi-autonomous vehicle designed to reduce the burden on ground troops. As well as being driven like an ordinary vehicle, the MOATV can be tele-operated by a remote control or instructed to semi-autonomously follow or go directly to a soldier operating a PDA. The company says the technology on the MOATV, which includes collision detection and avoidance systems that allow it to negotiate around objects that lie in its path while operating autonomously, can be applied to any vehicle.  Read More

The GUSS autonomous vehicles developed by Virginia Tech are to make their debut at the 201...

Having placed third in the prestigious DARPA Urban Challenge in 2007, engineering students from Virginia Tech have returned to the forefront of autonomous vehicle development by designing and building four GUSS (Ground Unmanned Support Surrogate) vehicles. Able to carry 1800 lbs and designed to resupply and evacuate troops in the field as well as reduce the load carried by them, the vehicles are due to make their debut at the impending 2010 Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC)war games in Hawaii.  Read More

The WayPilot system uses radio transponders to alert drivers when they're drifting out of ...

More and more cars are integrating driver assistance features that help do things like avoid collisions, keep a safe distance from other vehicles, or even parallel park. There are also Lane Departure Warning systems that use onboard cameras to keep the driver from drifting out of their lane. But what happens if the roadside markings are worn away, or covered with snow or mud? Norwegian research organization SINTEF has come up with a solution called WayPilot – a system which uses sensors embedded in the asphalt and a shaking steering wheel to alert drivers before they stray too far off course.  Read More

Just how good will autonomous cars get? Watch this!!!

It's the kind of spectacular driving stunt we expect of James Bond or Frank Martin - slam the Aston Martin/Audi into reverse, plant the gas pedal, wait for momentum to pick up, then flick the wheel to perform a faultless 180 degree pirouette into an impossibly tight parking space. Only celluloid superheroes can drive like this and get it right every time ... oh, and autonomous vehicles. Faultless driving stunts are not normally associated with autonomous vehicles but check out this video because it'll help get everyone accustomed to the concept! Computers will eventually out-drive, out-think and out-perform humans on every level and this clip of autonomous supervehicle Stanley shows that computers out-driving us will be sooner rather than later.  Read More

GM's EN-V is a concept two-wheeled vehicle for personal transportation in the cities of th...

It is estimated that by 2030, urban areas will be home to more than 60 percent of the world’s eight billion people. That doesn’t bode well for cities with public infrastructure that is already struggling to meet the growing demand for transportation. General Motors (GM) and its strategic partner, Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp. Group (SAIC) have come up with a concept two-wheeled vehicle to address the need for personal urban transportation in the cities of the future - the Electric Networked-Vehicle.  Read More

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