In July 2016, a test driver for the Tesla Model S died in a car crash while using the Autopilot driver-assistance system. Since that fateful day, fierce debate about the efficacy and safety of the technology has arisen.
The crash is being thoroughly investigated in order to determine whether the human driver, the Autopilot driver-assistance system, or a combination of the two was the cause of the accident.
NASA has now stepped in to the investigation. They have extensive experience in this subject, having studied vehicle automation and the psychological consequences for drivers for decades.
A convoy of British tanks in western Germany ran over a novice driver's car after she made a wrong turn into the path of the oncoming tanks.
She was unharmed, but that's more than we can say about her car! The Germany driver did not see the tank when she made the left turn, and the tank was unable to stop in time. Consequently, the 62 ton tank crushed the front end of her Toyota hatchback car.
Self-driving cars have been in the news a lot lately.
There is one major drawback, however, that has yet to be fully explored: Cyber attacks. Insurers and car manufacturers are starting to factor this in, as hacking a is big risk.
These cars are already predicted to appear on roads in North America by 2020, and they boast a wide range of state-of-the-art technology. Sensors, cameras, and even LiDAR (light detection and ranging) in these cars help them navigate obstacles, drive straight, and follow traffic signs.
These very same technological advances in the self-driving cars systems' are exactly what make them so vulnerable to hackers.
CTV News is currently reporting on the largest car recall in the history of the USA.
6 deaths are associated with the defective airbags produced by Takata Corp., in addition to over 100 injuries.
The chemical used to deploy the airbag in the event of a collision causes an explosion which is too powerful for the hardware containing the airbag. The explosion causes the compartment and inflating mechanism to breakup into shrapnel and fly into the passenger side.
Around 33.8 million airbags have been declared defective by Takata. This adds 18 million airbags to existing recalls.