Google To Make First Autonomous Car Prototypes
|   Sunday, June 01, 2014
Since the project of the car that drives itself started those from Google aimed to build vehicles that would take the whole burden of driving onto themselves. One application of this would be that you could take a short trip through town without taking a margin of 20 minutes to find a parking place. People can keep their freedom of movement even if they do not remember where they put the car keys. Also, driving under the influence of alcohol will be history, said Google in a statement.


Now, the American company explores how autonomous cars could look by building prototypes. Cars that drive themselves will not have the wheel, accelerator or brake pedals since they do not need them. Software and sensors on board will do all the work. Google imagined that vehicles will be equipped only with the minimum necessary so you can go anywhere you want through the touch of a button. And this is an important step towards improving safety on public roads, and transforming mobility for millions of people.

What differentiates Google's autonomous cars from other vehicles: safety first. Prototypes have sensors covering dead angles and can detect objects at a great distance in all directions, which is very helpful especially on busy streets with many intersections.

Google pays special attention to safety. Because of this, they started with a speed regulator, because minimum speed equals minimal damage. Also, the windshield is flexible and the front is made ​​from foam, so that when it hits a pedestrian or cyclist, the impact is minimized. Since no auxiliary controls are on this first prototype, the mechanical facilities are built in with two different steering and braking control system.

"We imagine at some point there will be an accident with one of these vehicles, so we've designed the front end to be soft," stated Ron Medford, director of safety for the project and former U.S. Department of Transportation administrator in charge of vehicle safety research and regulations.

The first prototypes of autonomous cars created by Google can go with a top speed of 40 km / h.
Google plans to build around 100 prototypes, and later in this summer, will begin testing with previous versions that also have manual controls. If all goes well, the U.S. giant wants to start a testing pilot program in California in the coming years, which will collect important data and will continue to develop the technology.

These prototypes are "designed for learning, not luxury" and have two seats with seat belts, buttons to stop and start the car, and a display that shows the path that the car will follow.

"Nothing is going to change overnight, but this is another sign of the drastic shifts in automotive technology, business practices and retailing we're going to witness over the next 10 years," said Karl Brauer, analyst at Kelley Blue Book.

Google announced last month that it has made a major breakthrough in its project for autonomous driving, the software giant concentrating to make the car safe urban streets of cities.

"There's this myth that people love driving. But commuting to work in the morning isn't fun. What if we could let people focus on things like texting that they are already doing in their cars, but do it safely?" said Chris Urmson, director of Google's self-driving car project, in a statement earlier this month.
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