The Autonomo 2030 Concept is a proposal for a highly-advanced, self-driving vehicle which could help significantly reduce congestion within some of the world’s largest cities. The concept was inspired by a combination of bio-mimicry, artificial intelligence and sustainability.
As the world’s population increases, the strain on existing transportation infrastructure will continue to increase. Drivers in mega cities like Los Angeles are already experiencing excruciatingly slow commutes on a daily basis. And without some radically new ideas things aren’t going to get better anytime soon. Recognising this, the Autonomo 2030’s designer, Australian Charles Rattray, decided to offer a new solution.
As the name suggests, the concept is designed for the year 2030 – as that is the estimated date at which the required technology and computing power will be available to make the Autonomo 2030 a mass-produced and affordable reality. The vehicle is extremely compact – it’s roughly the same length as a MINI, but it’s only just over half the width. Inside is a tandem 1+1 seating layout.
But it’s not the design of the vehicle itself that’s the clever bit. Instead it’s the way the Autonomo 2030 functions. Like a shoal of fish, huge numbers of Autonomo’s could whizz along the highways, inches from each other, but in safety thanks to their incredibly clever onboard computers which rely on a vast amount of data gathered from high definition cameras with immense object recognition capabilities, radar, lidar, infrared sensors and microwave sensors. Each individual Autonomo 2030 will take its occupants exactly to where they want to go, but by constantly communicating with all the other Autonomos around it, it is able to flow seamlessly along the road and pass though junctions in a faster and more coordinated manner.
When a number of Autonomo 2030 are travelling in convoy the vehicles will bunch up together, leaving just a 20cm (9 inch) gap between. This results in the following vehicles using considerably less energy thanks to the slipstream of the lead vehicle. In studies by the US Department of Transportation, vehicles which followed another at a distance of 6.5 metres (21 feet) used up to 25 percent less energy than the lead vehicle. So the tiny gaps between the Autonomos should provide even greater energy savings.
Powering the Autonomo 2030 concept is an electric drivetrain. Underneath the nanoscale surface texture, the Autonomo will have 2 transparent photovoltaic layers that turn solar energy into electricity. It uses advanced lightweight batteries to store energy that is able to be wirelessly charged in minutes though electrodynamic induction or energy transfer lasers. High-volume roads or lanes could contain induction charging pads placed on the surface to wirelessly charge vehicles as they move.
The Autonomo 2030 might not appeal to the kind of person who enjoys the thrill of driving. But for people facing a 2 hour crawl to work everyday, the prospect looks much more rosy!
Source: Behance/Charles Rattray