The prospect of driverless trucks would fill most car drivers with dread but the technology is now available and being demonstrated by the US Army. This video shows a demonstration organised by the US Military at Fort Hood in Texas earlier this month.
The project has been developed by the U.S. Army Tank-Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Centre (TARDEC) and US defence supplier Lockheed Martin. The venture demonstrated the ability of fully autonomous convoys to operate in urban environments with multiple vehicles of different models.
The system has been called the Autonomous Mobility Appliqué System (AMAS) program, and the test involved driverless tactical vehicles navigating hazards and obstacles such as road intersections, oncoming traffic, stalled and passing vehicles, pedestrians and roundabouts in both urban and rural test areas.
If this technology is now becoming available to the military, it is in the interest of the manufacturers to find a civilian commercial application of the technology in order to spread the development costs around a larger number of production units at a lower price.