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Month: July 2018

SXSW 2018: Wyoming’s Plan to Connect Semi Trucks and Reduce Traffic Deaths

The greatest benefit that self-driving cars could bring to humanity would be a reduction in traffic deaths. Policymakers, car company executives, and safety advocates look forward to the day when self-driving cars can dramatically reduce or eliminate the 3,400 deaths that occur every day because of traffic accidents. But self-driving cars are only just starting […]

Waymo Filings Give New Details on Its Driverless Taxis

Waymo CEO John Krafcik announced last week that the company would be launching a driverless taxi service in Phoenix later this year. An application Waymo filed with the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) for driverless testing, obtained by IEEE Spectrum using public record laws, reveals more about how that service might work. Waymo is […]

Haptic Safety for Unmanned Vehicles

Even as fully automated vehicles continue to be tested and used on roadways, there will likely still be a need for human involvement. Anticipating this need, Nikhil Chopra, an associate professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Maryland, is working on in-vehicle technology that will summon help in certain environments. “We […]

Cadillac CT6

Super Cruise sets a high new bar for semiautonomous systems. It’s smarter and safer than anything from Audi, Mercedes, or Volvo. It’s safer than even Tesla’s fine-but-flawed Autopilot. The CT6 is expressly designed for hands-off-the-wheel highway driving. On a highway north of Manhattan, I drove for more than 2 hours without once touching the wheel, […]

Honda Civic Type R

I’m back in the pits of Connecticut’s historic Lime Rock Park. And if you’d told me even a decade ago that a front-wheel-drive hatchback could rock a track like this, yet still reliably perform its everyday duties—you know, like a Honda—I’d have doubled over in laughter. With 228 kilowatts (306 horsepower), a 4.9-second leap to […]

Printed Sensor Monitors Tire Tread in Real Time

A flexible, printed sensor that accurately measures tire wear in real time could warn drivers when the tread on their tires has gotten uneven or precariously thin. The sensor, made with carbon nanotube ink, spots millimeter-level changes in tire tread with 99 percent accuracy. Today’s cars are laden with sensors that keep tabs on many […]