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U.S. ARMY MARCHES TOWARD DRIVERLESS FUTURE

  • Magazine Article
  • 16OFHP10_08
Published 2016-10-01by SAE International in United States
Language:
  • English

TARDEC targets vehicle autonomy with new V2V / V2X test bed in Michigan.

Four tractor-trailer rigs barreled eastbound on Interstate 69 in rural Michigan, their non-reflective olive drab and desert-tan paint and blast-resistant glass the giveaways that this was a U.S. Army exercise. Running nose-to-tail in convoy formation, each of the military Freightliners wore a forest of electronic sensors on its roof. And while the trucks each had an operator in full control behind the wheel, the quartet actually was driving toward an autonomous future.

The Army for years has been investigating autonomous mobility platforms that take human operators out of harm's way. Toward this goal, the public-roads demonstration on I-69 this summer showcased a growing collaboration between TARDEC, the Army's Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center, and the Michigan Department of Transportation. MDoT has created a 22-mile stretch of I-69-a limited-access, 4-lane divided highway in Lapeer and St. Clair counties-on which TARDEC has begun testing of “connected” vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2X) communications.