Waymo Autonomous Trucks
We’ve all witnessed in the gigantic growth in the technology sector. But could you have imagined peeping in the cockpit of 18 wheels truck on a highway just to find no one on the driver’s seat? Personally, I would have reacted to the thought with a shiver and a smile at the same time. Reality check this high-end technology is already blooming around us.Waymo self driving trucks are here to stay.
Driving a truck is an exhaustive and very repetitive job. Most of the time it is driving at a certain speed along the designated route over a long stretch of highway with few obstacles or changes. Well, you will agree with me that, this is very tedious to humans. Occasionally, this results in accidents that have been caused by truck drivers sleeping on the job. On the other hand, most drivers park their trucks on the roadside or a motel or parking spot to take a nap or rest. If this time is saved, then it would increase the profit margin for the company.
Thanks to the invention and production of the autonomous truck like waymo self-driving truck for offering a solution to this. An intelligent auto-pilot that doesn’t get tired, angered or distracted. Now, a driver can keep on track while also, being able to rest while driving and leave the simple and tedious maneuvering to a computer. Curious how this technology works .well, Keep on reading.
Levels of automation of self driving trucks
Before we get to the technical part of how autonomous truck operates. It’s important to understand the levels and evolution in an autonomous industry. There is an international standard, J3016 that grade vehicles automation on a scale from 0-5.
- Level 0 (No automation); this is a regular car without automation. Most cars built in the ’70s or before then. The human driver fully controls the car or truck.
- Level 1 (Assisted); certain systems may be controlled by the car one at a time. Systems like cruise control or automatic braking.
- Level 2 (partially automated); on this level both speed and control can be delegated to the car. A driver is still required to monitor. Otto, embark, Waymo self-driving trucks are at currently at this level. They will depend on a driver to perform certain complex actions like drive them to a freeway from where the autopilot takes over.
- Level 3(conditional automation); the car manages all safety-critical functions under certain conditions. In this level the car assumes 90% of However, a driver is expected to take if alerted.
- Level 4(high automation); a car will be able to drive without drivers attention. The driver may safely go to sleep or leave the driver’s seat. The car or truck is equipped to self-drive for in some scenarios though not all.
- Level 5(fully automation); Is the ultimate step in autonomous development. The can operate in any environment under any condition without any intervention from a human at all
How Waymo self-driving trucks work
Autonomous trucks depend on a combination of various systems to navigate and autopilot. They use sensors to perceive their surroundings. To construct their internal map Uber self-driving prototypes use sixty-four laser beams, along with other sensors. Self-driving truck which uses a suite of custom-built sensors that include but not limited to; radar, sonar, GPS, lasers and high powered cameras.
The information captured by these sensors is then fed to a computer that creates a visual map of its surroundings. Then, uses a combination of artificial intelligence and algorithms to determine appropriate navigation paths, as well as obstacles and relevant signage. Awesome right?
Our take on autopilot trucks
The era of self-driving automobiles is here with us. And it brings with it many benefits especially to freight companies like efficient delivery. Other like Reduced accident rates is a plus to the community in general. And long-distance trips will only be limited by the size of the gas tank or battery.
As much as this new technology promises a lot of benefits, it also has its downsides too. The most obvious is to the drivers depending on freight as their breadwinner. It also comes with a range of challenges. The autopilot is a computer and we are all familiar with computer bugs and hackers. Lastly, this technology will obviously favor wealthier cities and countries, those with better roads and high connectivity.
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