Thursday, 1 October 2009
Robot cars sounding fishy?
Nature has often inspired scientists in the way they look at solutions to problems. The communication and co-operation of ants and the flight and navigation of the bumble bee are two examples of this. Now we learn that Nissan is looking at how shoals of fish manage to move at speed in large numbers together in close proximity without collisions, to inspire how to make robotic cars of the future avoid collisions as well. The car in question is called the EPORO ... which is being shown at the CEATEC technology show in Japan, one which I was able to attend some years ago. They are able to demonstrate 6 EPORO cars travelling as one shoal or group! While fish use sight and lateral line sense, the EPORO interestingly uses ultra wide band radio to "see" and a laser range finder as a lateral sensor. I have blogged before about robot self-driving cars ... these developments by Nissan are steps along the road towards this (sorry for the pun!).