Driverless car navigates Berlin streets

share: digg facebook twitter The vehicle maneuvers through traffic on its own using a sophisticated combination of devices, including a computer, electronics and a precision satellite navigation system in the trunk, a camera in the front, and laser scanners on the roof and around the front and rear bumpers. "The vehicle can recognize other cars on the road, pedestrians, buildings and trees up to 70 meters (yards) around it and even see if the traffic lights ahead are red or green and react accordingly," Raul Rojas, the head of the university's research group for artificial intelligence, told reporters at a presentation Friday. [...] the car's recognition and reaction to its environment is much faster than a human being's reaction. "There's a big trend for completely computer-controlled cars — many companies and research centers in several countries are working on it and it is hard to say, who's got the most-developed vehicle at the moment," Ferdinand Dudenhoeffer, a professor for automotive economics at the University of Duisburg-Essen, told The Associated Press on Tuesday. In Berlin, the university researchers received a special permit from the city's security and safety controllers in June to use it in regular traffic — under the condition that a safety driver sits behind the steering wheel, even if he doesn't touch anything — not the steering wheel, gas pedals nor brakes.

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Topics:  automobile   berlin   cars   cool   driverless car   europe   free university   germany   technology   
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