'Road train' technology could cut fuel use and traffic jams, boost safety

Posted By: Ani
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London, Jan 19 (ANI): New technology that links 'road trains' to cars has undergone its first trial and if successful, could cut fuel use, boost safety and may even cut congestion.

The trials held on Volvo's test track in Sweden slaved a single car to a lorry to test the platooning system.

The tests were carried out under the European Commission's research project carried Sartre - Safe Road Trains for the Environment.

Once the lead vehicle is in charge, the driver of the car doesn't have to worry about driving or navigation, reports the BBC, because the commands to steer, speed up and slow down all come from the driver of the lead vehicle.

Cars also keep an eye on their position relative to other vehicles in a platoon to ensure they keep a safe distance.

Tom Robinson, Sartre co-ordinator at engineering firm Ricardo and the trial participant Eric Coelingh, an engineering specialist at Volvo Cars, both gave a thumbs up to the trial.

"We are very pleased to see that the various systems work so well together already the first time," said Coelingh.

The technology behind the Sartre system could be in use in a few years, however, it may take much longer for European member nations to pass laws that allow it to be widely used. (ANI)

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