Russian motorists from Tula Oblast have a vehicle into a remotely controlled automobile. Say what? Now, I know what you are thinking – Where’s Tula Oblast? Well, you can look that up later, but for right now, – some Russian guys with a little too much time on their hands have managed to create a system that allows for a car(In this case an Opel Vectra) to operate without a driver. Impossible you say? Nope – check this out.
The mechanics involved was quite simple – instead of trying to break into the car’s computer and making the software control the hardware, they just added more hardware. With actuators to the brakes, and steering wheel, the system didn’t involve any software customization – which means that the developed system could be transferred to any other vehicle as long as the vehicle was an automatic, and had a straight shift transmission (instead of the zigzag kind). The only real downfall is that the gas is either on or off; there is no “slow gas” option. More options for car accessories are provided by ppcgb.com.
Electronics for the car
Since the whole system is based in mechanical actuators and physical movement of the gas, brake, and steering wheel, the electronics are secondary. While the specific electronics are not mentioned, they are only supplemental to the functionality of the assembly itself – they are not needed to integrate with the vehicle’s electrical systems.
Functionality in iPad
Upon several stages of testing, there were times that the team had to sit a driver in the car to manage the wheel, while everything else was handled by remote control. The functionality of this device is quite a ways off from being viable to the common user, or even the experienced user. As of now, they haven’t developed a way to control the flow of gas, or make the interface a bit more stable. If you are ready and wondering why this isn’t in your new car then you may have to wait a bit. Although this isn’t quite like the Oxford experiment which allows the vehicle to drive itself using an iPad, it’s close- and a bit more radical.
Testing a car with the iPad
While this is still in the testing stages – this is only a hobby for these guys, but may turn into something more fruitful for the future as the demand is increased. The first few tests resulted in driving the vehicle into a snow bank, but after a while, it resulted in a semi-smooth ride.
Is this iPad Car Control coming to a vehicle near you?
With Google working on their self-driving cars, and these folks in Russia allowing for a manual interface through an iPad, I suspect that a self-driving car, remote control car, or any combination thereof isn’t too far away as a realistic option for your new car in the future.