A look at Google Driverless Car Features
The future of humanity looks pretty bright when we see the pace of development in the fields of engineering and technology. But for driving profession, there is some bad news; Google is building driver-less cars! The purpose of this project, according to Google, is to reduce the number of human casualties due to road accidents.
The project named Google Self- Driving Car has been in the news for quite some time now. Though the project was on the cards for a long time, it gained pace when Sebastian Thrun, previously, Head of Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, joined Google in April 2011 to lead this project. The first license for an autonomous car was issued in May 2012 in Nevada, USA and the latest prototype of the Google car without driver was displayed in 2014. Let?s have a look at Google driverless car features.
Google car without driver has an attractive yet practically feasible physical appearance. The car has a curvy body made up of polycarbonate. The windscreen is made up of plastic which is thick, but bends when touched. Accidents on this Google car without driver are highly unlikely, but for the worst case scenario, there is a bonnet made up of soft foam to minimize the impact of a collision. The front view has been designed to look like a smiley face. There is a little black pointed nose and big rectangular eyes.? However, they are not made just to look like eyes and nose; they actually do their job. The eyes serve as headlights and the nose is actually radar and a laser sensor.
The Google?s autonomous car is equipped with cameras, radars, sensors, GPS and 3D maps; all controlled by the software called Google Chauffeur. The main device is 64 beam laser mounted on the top of the car. This laser allows the software to generate detailed 3D maps of the surroundings. These generated maps are then compared with the already fed maps of the world. With the coordination of both, the car drives itself on the roads. Constant research is going on to make the map generation precise enough to avoid any unwanted situation.
The cost of the mounted technology equipment on the car is around $150,000 of which the radar costs $70,000.
Limitations in the Car?
Like every other scientific invention, Google Driverless car features have their limitations, which are listed below.
- They can?t function is stormy rains and heavy snow.
- They can?t differentiate between a normal pedestrian and a traffic warden.
- They can be very slow in bumpy roads or in conditions of dust, dirty roads.
- In case of empty roads, the car will stop as a precautionary measure and can be a waste of time.
- They can?t sense temporary traffic signals which were not drawn on the maps.
- They can?t navigate themselves through parking lots.
Considering these limitations, Google has made delays in the initial public launch dates of these cars from 2017 to 2020. Though Google driverless car features are promising and can attract a huge market, they certainly do need improvements in order to compete with the automobile market.