5 Technologies That Make Self-Driving Cars Safe

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Technology is an avenue that’s ever-growing. Innovations are always coming up daily, touching all industries and sectors. One of the sectors currently benefiting from a unique innovation is transport. The innovation is that of self-driving cars.

A self-driving car will take you from one place to another without your intervention. All you need to do is get in, sit back and read a book, or enjoy the scenario. The car in itself is your chauffeur. However, for these self-driving cars to work efficiently, a lot of technology is in use. This technology will not only enable driving but also contribute to your safety. What’s all this technology being mentioned? Read on to know and learn more about them.

Before diving into this article’s focus, it’s important to clarify that self-driving cars are not similar to those with the cruise-control feature. With cruise control, the driver must have their hands on the steering wheel during this period. The cruise-control feature allows the driver to set a speed at which the vehicle should maintain. This is unlike self-driving, where the driver doesn’t need to hold the steering wheel or handle other parts. The two technologies have brought about misinformation due to confusion in their systems. Here’s the original article on an example of the misinterpretation. 

With the distinction aside, here are the technologies in use by self-driving cars:
Cameras

Driving with human intervention requires the driver to see their surroundings and know the next course of action. The cameras of a self-driving car take up the visual aspect of driving. Self-driving cars have several cameras fixed on them, most of which offer a 360° view. 

In addition, the cameras are of high quality and have high resolution. These features give your vehicle a clear view of its surroundings and allow it to move accordingly without causing accidents. Besides showing the general surroundings of the vehicle, the cameras outline lane lines and road signs, such as stop. Therefore, the self-driving car will be able to stay in its lane and not hinder the movement of other vehicles around it.

Radar 

Radar technology uptakes the perception aspect of a human driver. It’ll utilize radio waves to measure the distance, speed, and angles of objects surrounding the self-driving car. Should there be any oncoming obstruction, it’ll also detect this.

This system allows your car to make the right move at the right time rather than at the wrong time. This prevents possible collision with other vehicles and items on the road.

LIDAR

LIDAR stands for Light Detecting And Ranging, which more or less functions like radar technology. The two complement each other for efficient self-driving with your car.  

While radar technology uses radio waves to function, LIDAR uses laser beams for detection. It utilizes the principle of light reflection, whereby it sends out light pulses. Should there be an object nearby, the light will hit the object and bounce back to the LIDAR system. The time the light takes to bounce back to the source will determine how far the object is from the self-driving vehicle. It’ll then know the right move to make.

Computing

For your self-driving car to operate, it requires a strong computing system. This system works like the brain of your vehicle. Once the car’s cameras, radar, and LDAR systems collect data, they’ll relay the information to the car’s computer.

The computer will then analyze this data and decide on the next course of action. Most of these systems work best with a GPS system. It’s the only way it’ll know where the vehicle’s going next, depending on the direction. 

Suppose there’s a need to overtake. Will the self-driving car manage to do this? The answer is yes. Self-driving cars have algorithms that enable them to learn the usual behavior of the car’s owner. Therefore, if the car owner overlaps at a certain point based on the clear surroundings, then the car will do the same.

You might be wondering how long computers take to process all this information. Won’t there be delays? Well, all this information relays at quite a high speed, and the computer will also make the interpretation faster. Therefore, you don’t need to worry about a slow-moving car on the road.

Controllers

Controllers are what will move your self-driving car from point A to B. They work like your hands and legs. Once the computing system analyzes the data and identifies the next course of action, it’ll pass the information to the controllers to take the next action.

The controllers will handle your brake system, steering wheel, and throttle. Within no time, you’ll be headed to your destination.

Conclusion 

Although not yet fully adopted, self-driving cars are an innovation that’s here to stay. It’s part of development, which most countries aim to achieve over time. Therefore, adoption is highly likely in most states. As a driver looking to invest in a self-driving car, this article has shed light on the safety features of this technology. Therefore, you need not worry about safety as you use the innovation. However, it’s important to point out that the level of safety depends on the self-driving car manufacturer. Be sure to do your due diligence before making a purchase.

 

Author’s Bio:

Amanda Nelson is currently a professional content writer. She is self-motivated and maintains her attention on the task at hand. She enjoys reading novels and gardening in her free time.