Some motorists are excited about it, while others are nervous about the concept. We may be looking at the next chapter of motoring, as Mercedes-Benz is betting on the future and they have a concept truck to prove it.
While truck drivers spend countless hours on the road transporting goods, the accidents with their giant, heavy vehicles are often ugly and horrific. Mercedes-Benz hopes to make it easier and safer for them with their Self-Driving Truck.
The truck is being driven by an automated system called Highway Pilot. The human does the thinking and leaves the driving to the computer. The Mercedes truck is illuminated by countless LEDs that light up the paint and adjust to the driving situation. In place of headlamps, LED bulbs glow orange to indicate a turn, then go back to white, the standard color when the truck is under human control. When the truck is in autonomous mode, the lights glow blue: “They then pulsate strongly, thus symbolizing the truck’s powerful heartbeat and clearly indicating the vehicle’s current operating mode to other road users.”
Radar sensors and cameras constantly scan the road and surrounding traffic to ensure a safe clearance. One camera can even read traffic signs. Working in conjunction, the systems can also keep the truck in the center of its lane and brake or accelerate, according to road conditions and traffic.
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