Friday, August 25, 2017
Futuristic self-driving truck concept for Audi
Lorries on motorways are a step closer to accelerating, braking and steering in sync through wireless technology, thanks to £8.1 million government funding for trials announced today (25 August 2017).
The ‘platooning’ trials will see up to 3 heavy goods vehicles, travelling in convoy, with acceleration and braking controlled by the lead vehicle. All lorries in the platoon will always have a driver ready to take control at any time.
If successful, this technology could have major benefits for motorists and businesses in the UK. A row of lorries driving closer together could see the front truck pushing the air out of the way, making the vehicles in the convoy more efficient, lowering emissions and improving air quality.
Transport Minister Paul Maynard said:
We are investing in technology that will improve people’s lives.
Advances such as lorry platooning could benefit businesses through cheaper fuel bills and other road users thanks to lower emissions and less congestion.
But first we must make sure the technology is safe and works well on our roads, and that’s why we are investing in these trials.