Within the fold of his research project “now replaces afas”, a MAN is currently developing a vehicle security guard with no drivers. This technology provides greater levels of security and also paves the way for the future of mobility.
Within the fold of his research project “now replaces afas”, a MAN is currently developing a vehicle security guard with no drivers. This technology provides greater levels of security and also paves the way for the future of mobility. Continuing to step, the dump truck is well ahead of his escort. Now, that starts slowly on the back there is the vehicle protection MAN TGM 18.340. Sitting behind the steering wheel is Patrick Jiskra, who carefully watched every detail, but without moving a finger.
The developer’s functional 27 years working with systems of driving assistance, and currently demonstrates the future of the automotive industry here in the field of testing of MAN in Munich: driving automated without a driver. “We are now operating in docked mode,” he explains. “That means that we maintain a distance of ten meters to the work vehicle in front. This allows us to easily pass the entry and exit ramps of the highway without another vehicle to merge in the middle. ” And, in fact, the truck retains the exact distance, even in the curves of the road. To remain in the track, while the steering wheel rotates by itself as if it were operated by magic invisible. Once it has matured, this technology could not only help the drivers in their line of work, but also to save lives.
Move the sites of construction and maintenance on highways is very dangerous for road workers: they have the task of carrying out operations of cutting and cleaning, or work in rails to move the traffic. To ensure your safety, we implemented vehicles of safeguarding, who follow the work vehicle at a distance of 50 to 100 meters to protect them from traffic. However, the shock of serious rear-end impacts occur repeatedly: only in Bavaria, a vehicle collides with road construction mobile every day, by what are often the drivers of vehicles of safeguard that often suffer serious injuries or even death.
To minimize this risk, the project “now replaces afas” (“vehicle security auto without a driver to work sites in German autobahn”) was established in August of 2014. Eight partners from industry, research and government formed a partnership to work on the development of a prototype able to follow sites of road works mobile in the shoulder hard to protect them against the traffic and do so in a manner completely automated. Supported by the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs, this multimillion-euro project requires not only the experience derived from the construction of roads: the technical knowledge provided by MAN, and the suppliers also plays a crucial role. “Our experience is based on several aspects”, explains Walter Schwertberger, Director of Projects now replaces afas. “And while we have the capacity to set up technological systems to full driving automation, we are also aware of the limits imposed by the current standards for driving automation”.
The technical knowledge provided by MAN, and the suppliers also plays a crucial role. “Our experience is based on several aspects”, explains Walter Schwertberger, Director of Projects now replaces afas. “And while we have the capacity to set up technological systems to full driving automation, we are also aware of the limits imposed by the current standards for driving automation”. The technical knowledge provided by MAN, and the suppliers also plays a crucial role. “Our experience is based on several aspects”, explains Walter Schwertberger, Director of Projects now replaces afas. “And while we have the capacity to set up technological systems to full driving automation, we are also aware of the limits imposed by the current standards for driving automation”.
The project now replaces afas imposes high demands on vehicle technology: sensors, radar systems and cameras are continuously refined to interpret the data rendered with greater precision and certainty. After all, the vehicle security you will need to drive a day on the highway without a pilot. “However, the standard ISO 26262 current requires the presence of a driver and, therefore, is not suitable for systems without a driver,” says Schwertberger. “While we are working with the project now replaces afas, we are learning what regulations must change so that the driving itself without a driver is an option for the future.”
The partners of the project obtained preliminary conclusions on technical improvements and possible changes in licensing requirements for the operations of the prototype in the second half of 2017, since the vehicle was tested in the construction sites of highways in Hessia. Equipped with cutting edge technology, the vehicle was deployed exclusively in closed-section areas of construction, so as not to endanger the drivers. Subsequently, he returned to Munich, where the developers optimized the technology further on the basis of the experience gained. From march 2018, the vehicle once again has been launched on the routes of the highway in Hessia, but now in moving traffic. In this way, the project partners are also investigating how to react users of the road to the autonomous vehicle without a driver to see if they recognize it as such and, if so, how this could affect your driving.
For now, the legal regulations have not kept pace with the current technology. Gerd Riegelhuth, head of traffic and vice-president of Hessen Mobil, the public authority for traffic management and highways of Hessia, highlights the problem: “although the current standard actually covers driving in an autonomous, does not include the direction of vehicles without human drivers. This should induce the modification of numerous laws and regulations, ” says Riegelhuth. “However, the eighth amendment to the Traffic Law on the Road is a step in the right direction.” One thing is certain: the conduction region should be to become a fact, and that policy makers must address the reality of the mobility of tomorrow.
According to Riegelhuth, the partnership between Hessen Mobil and the MAN was highly productive and is also marked by a high level of confidence. “Therefore, it would make much sense to keep this issue on the agenda, and certainly with the same consortium that has already worked so successfully in the project now replaces afas”.
A MAN was also very helpful to the experience acquired in the test operations. “We now know a lot more than three years ago,” says Jiskra. “And we have optimized greatly the sensors, cameras, radars, and support systems. Today, all are working with much more precision ”. In the next step, you must make a decision on how to transfer the complex technology driving autonomous to the production in series. “For that moment, we must discuss how to obtain a serial product with technological solutions more cost-effective on the roads. However, the priority at this time is to refine the current systems ”. At this time, that would also include finding solutions to certain challenges, such as the commercial vehicle to drive autonomously from the operations base to the deployment location, and vice versa. “That is our next goal”, provides for Jiskra. “Being at the moment,
The vehicle safety and autonomous unmanned of MAN now replaces afas held a double premiere at the IAA, where one could see on the TRATON. The vehicle was presented to the general public for the first time and also received a special award on the 19th of September, which was awarded for the first time at the IAA 2018: the innovation award, “Truck Innovation Award 2019” awarded by the International Truck of the Jury of the year (IToY) for the first time. To obtain a total of 93 votes, the now replaces afas of MAN prevailed against the competition, which included five other candidates for the Innovation Award of Trucks. A requirement to compete for the new Truck Innovation Award is the existence of a progressive technology and pioneering.
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