Driverless vehicle to be tested on UK streets for the first time
Published: 2016-10-11 16:35:24.0 BdST Updated: 2016-10-11 16:35:24.0 BdST
A driverless vehicle carrying passengers will take to Britain's public roads for the first time on Tuesday, as part of trials aimed at paving the way for autonomous cars to hit the highways by the end of the decade.
The government is encouraging technology companies, carmakers and start-ups to develop and test their autonomous driving technologies in Britain, aiming to build an industry to serve a worldwide market which it forecasts could be worth around 900 billion pounds by 2025.
Earlier this year, it launched a consultation on changes to insurance rules and motoring regulations to allow driverless cars to be used by 2020 and said it would allow such vehicles to be tested on motorways from next year.
A pod - like a small two-seater car - developed by a company spun out from Oxford University will be tested in the southern English town of Milton Keynes on Tuesday, with organisers hoping the trials will feed vital information on how the vehicle interacts with pedestrians and other road-users.
“Today’s first public trials of driverless vehicles in our towns is a ground-breaking moment," Britain's business minister Greg Clark said.
“The global market for autonomous vehicles present huge opportunities for our automotive and technology firms and the research that underpins the technology and software will have applications way beyond autonomous vehicles,” he said.
The pod will operate fully without human control, using data from cameras and radars to move around pedestrianised areas. It was made by Oxford University spin-out Oxbotica, with software developed by the university's Oxford Robotics Institute.
Carmakers Jaguar Land Rover and Ford are both part of driverless car projects in Britain, as major carmakers seek to head off the challenge from technology firms such as Alphabet Inc's Google, which is also developing autonomous vehicles.
But all parties still need to overcome technological and legal obstacles including determining who would be responsible in the event of an accident, with recent accidents involving driving assistance systems raising safety concerns.
Organisers in Milton Keynes ran a number of exercises ahead of the trial including mapping the town and conducting safety planning with the local council ahead of Tuesday's trial.
The city, around 70 km north of London, was selected alongside three other locations for autonomous technology projects partly due to its wide pavements and cycle path network.
Britain is aiming to be more flexible in its approach to driverless testing than some other major economies, with Germany saying it will require black boxes to be fitted in such vehicles and automakers having to navigate different rules across US states.
Any unauthorised use or reproduction of bdnews24.com content for commercial purposes is strictly prohibited and constitutes copyright infringement liable to legal action.
- Peugeot buys iconic Indian car brand for $12m
- US judge approves VW dealers $1.2 billion settlement
- Trump threatens German carmakers with 35 percent US import tariff
- The hot and new at Detroit Auto Show
- Automakers, suppliers team up to share costs of self-driving cars
- Chided by Trump, Ford scraps Mexico factory, adds Michigan jobs
- BMW November sales up 5.9 percent, Mercedes poised to overtake
- Jaguar Land Rover wants to build electric cars in Britain
- Fiat Chrysler teams up with Amazon to sell cars online
- US regulator has opened Audi investigation, reports German weekly Bild am Sonntag
- Bangladeshi man killed in New York by landlord over rent dispute: Police
- BNP is a terrorist organisation: Canada court
- Former BNP leader Tanbir Ahmed Siddiky's son Irad arrested
- Big fashion brands pull out of Bangladesh garment summit over worker rights concerns
- Gas prices bubble up: Bangladesh households hit with over 50% monthly rise for stoves
- Astronomers find seven Earth-size planets where life may be possible
- Awami League's plot behind Canada court's verdict: BNP
- Hasina taunts Khaleda for stepping onto main altar of the Shaheed Minar
- Kabori’s memoirs at Ekushey Book Fair
- PM Hasina's official visit to India in April