At Detroit auto show, future high tech is present

January 17, 2018

For the technology phobic, the Einride T-Pod autonomous cargo truck could be the stuff of nightmares.

It is an imposing sight, lacking a traditional driver's cab, and looks like it might have been dreamed up by a sci-fi filmmaker.

The electric truck was one of many high-tech innovations on display at the Detroit auto show, where the top industry players in North America showed off their latest models and considered the future of automobiles and transportation.

A spokesman for Swedish company Einride told AFP on Tuesday it will test the T-Pod on its native country's roads later this year.

The promise of an autonomous future is a dominant theme for industry insiders, and many tech companies participating in the auto show focused on how to improve self-driving vehicles.

Nearby, systems manufacturer Nexteer boasted that it can make a steering wheel that does not need to be physically attached to the actual wheels of a car in order to turn them.

That lack of a direct connection allows the steering wheel to be a lot more maneuverable.

"We can have a stowable column, so the steering actually stows into the dash," Dave Sabol, an engineer with Nexteer, told AFP.

This will be key for , he said, because future cars can hide the when the driver is not in charge.

An Ohio firm offered access to data from its expansive road testing facility at a barely-populated outpost 40 miles out of Columbus.

Chief scientist Christoph Mertz told AFP he can create a database of regularly updated road conditions, so that robot cars of the future can use the information to quickly adapt to their environment.

"At the moment we are in the place where (data) is growing exponentially," Mertz said.

Meanwhile, Sheikh Shuvo is offering to "clean" data that already exists to teach perform better and learn how to drive more like humans.

"That refining process is labeling the data, showing the car what a pedestrian looks like, what a pedestrian does, so that it can better predict different behaviors," Shuvo told AFP.

Despite all of the promise, though, many tech attendees said robots and artificial intelligence are not replacing humans any time soon.

Even that autonomous cargo truck has its limitations.

The T-Pod carries about half as much as a typical human-driven truck and is best for distances no farther than 300 miles, the company said.

Explore further: GM seeks US approval for car with no steering wheel

Related Stories

Hi, steering wheel? Jaguar's thinking caps call it the Sayer

September 6, 2017

(Tech Xplore)—Chew on this. Forget about turning for news about fresh features in your self-driving car of tomorrow. Jaguar wants to turn everything on its head. Car ownership, like car driving, is up for fresh air thinking.

Recommended for you

A novel approach of improving battery performance

September 18, 2018

New technological developments by UNIST researchers promise to significantly boost the performance of lithium metal batteries in promising research for the next-generation of rechargeable batteries. The study also validates ...

Germany rolls out world's first hydrogen train

September 17, 2018

Germany on Monday rolled out the world's first hydrogen-powered train, signalling the start of a push to challenge the might of polluting diesel trains with costlier but more eco-friendly technology.

Technology streamlines computational science projects

September 15, 2018

Since designing and launching a specialized workflow management system in 2010, a research team from the US Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory has continuously updated the technology to help computational ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.