Recent developments in the military sector have demonstrated an increasing importance in protecting troops in the field, whether this be by automating vehicles
or enhancing armor-based protection
and maneuverability. BAE Systems
has decided against picking a specific area to test with its M1151 Survivability concept but, instead, has lumped a range of technologies into a single vehicle, and is currently unveiling the fruits of its research at the AUSA (Association of the United States Armys) annual exposition in Washington.
Being a long-haul truck driver is by no means the safest job in the world, but it could be a lot more dangerous than most of us think. Figures released by the commercial drivers’ International Road Transport Union, the IRU, show that 17 percent of Europe’s long-haul truck drivers are victims of robbery during work-hours at some time over a five-year period. And thefts from long-haul trucks total in the region of EUR€8.2 billion (US$12 billion approx.) – every year. New initiatives by Volvo Trucks and the EU are being undertaken to improve driver safety and prevent these thefts. One particular anti-theft device in development is a lockable fifth wheel that can be remotely controlled, thus preventing the trailer from being separated from the truck and disappearing.
When I was growing up, entertainment in the backseat of a car had a whole different meaning to what it does today. Presently, backseat entertainment is geared at a much younger audience. Audiovox’s in-car VOD10PS2 Mobile Video PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system would appear to have heaps of appeal to both bored backseat youngsters and drivers who appreciate peace and quiet from passengers. This mobile video system is an all-in-one, overhead, drop-down that combines the Audiovox's overhead unit with one of the gaming industry's best-selling systems, the PlayStation 2.
A group of European companies and universities have collaborated to produce a series of multifunctional robots for urban hygiene tasks. With abilities ranging from door-to-door garbage pickup and transportation, to automated street cleaning, the DUSTBOTs recently demonstrated their skills at a station in the town of Atxuri, Portugal.
Scientists from six European countries have collaborated to develop a new computer system that enables vehicles to recognize their drivers’ normal behavior and therefore avoid accidents caused by unusual behavior. The DRIVSCO system detects the anomalies, often caused by inattention or poor visibility, and signals an alarm that warns drivers to beware early enough to give them time to react.
At Gizmag we’ve given EDAG
some well-warranted attention over the years and, if you take a look at the company’s latest offering, you’ll understand why. The EDAG Light Car – Open Source is a collaboration of talented companies brought together by EDAG, all contributing to the one project in much the same way that Open Source
works in the IT realm. The EDAG vehicle concept vision was first presented at this year’s 79th Geneva Motor Show in March and the company says further development of the project will be unveiled at the Frankfurt IAA show in a couple of days. A test vehicle is hoped to be ready for next year's Geneva Motor Show.
Most Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) employ a fixed wing design
much like that of a traditional plane. But these designs offer limited maneuverability and payload capacity, require a runway to takeoff and land, and are unable to hover. Vertical Take Off and Landing (VTOL) UAVs
get around these problems, usually by employing rotors like a helicopter. Now UK-based company AESIR has developed a VTOL UAV that has no external rotating parts, instead relying on a phenomenon known as the Coanda effect to generate lift.
Anyone who has towed a caravan and encountered a ‘snaking’ situation, where the caravan swings from side to side, knows just how scary such an experience can be. There are some ways to lessen the risk of such scenarios, such as not loading heavy items towards the rear of the caravan, but motor home manufacturer Heku has come up with an interesting design called the Carcamp that's designed to enhance stability even at high speeds.
Supercars are 20 to the dozen these days and it takes something pretty special to elicit that all-important ‘wow’ factor from a modern production car. McLaren
is one manufacturer who is most certainly capable of such feats of design and engineering, and while it’s debatable as to whether the original F1 will ever be usurped in terms of pure aggression and innovation, subsequent models
suggest that it hasn’t lost its edge when it comes to jaw-dropping new designs. This claim is underlined with the release of the new MP4-12C, a car that most should agree from an aesthetics standpoint hits the ‘goldilocks zone
’ between the sublime and the ridiculous.
Indian electric car company REVA will unveil two new electric cars at the forthcoming Frankfurt International Motor Show
(IAA) on September 16. The REVA NXR is a four-seater, three-door hatchback family car aimed at urban drivers while REVA’s showcar, the NXG, is a sporty two-seater with a targa roof that was designed by Dilip Chhabria of internationally-renowned automotive design company DC Design. REVA says it has added a unique technology to its cars that addresses ‘range anxiety’ – worrying about running out of charge mid-journey. The REVive telematics technology acts like an invisible reserve fuel tank. Drivers telephone or SMS REVA for an instant remote top-up should they run out of charge. At present, details are scarce about how REVive actually works but REVA assures us all will be revealed at IAA.