Monday, January 11, 2010

'Road trains' get ready to roll

Welcome back all readers to another year! 2010 looks set to be an uncertain and unpredictable year indeed - yet mixed with there it seems that the year ahead will also be open to tremendous opportunities and vision. Some things are already on a 'roll', including this plan for cars on EU roads to be linked together in a 'train' using wireless sensors:

An EU-financed research project is looking at inexpensive ways of getting vehicles to travel in a 'platoon' on Europe's motorways.Each road train could include up to eight separate vehicles - cars, buses and trucks will be mixed in each one.

The EU hopes to cut fuel consumption, journey times and congestion by linking vehicles together.
Early work on the idea suggests that fuel consumption could be cut by 20% among those cars and trucks travelling behind the lead vehicle.

Spanish trials
The lead vehicle would be handled by a professional driver who would monitor the status of the road train. Those in following vehicles could take their hands off the wheel, read a book or watch TV, while they travel along the motorway. Their vehicle would be controlled by the lead vehicle. Funded under the European Commission's Framework 7 research plan, Sartre (Safe Road Trains for the Environment) is aimed at commuters in cars who travel long distances to work every day but will also look at ways to involve commercial vehicles.

Read original article - ''Road trains' get ready to roll'

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