Research Attempts To Make Self-Driving Safer For Pedestrians
UK – As self-driving vehicles become closer to an everyday reality, manufacturers are becoming concerned with building trust in autonomous vehicles. For example, human drivers and pedestrians currently interact through eye contact. There is a fear that this important element will be lost in autonomous vehicles. Jaguar Land Rover is conducting studies to work out how much information self-driving cars could share with pedestrians in the future.
Jaguar is using AI-powered ‘pods’ in their experiment. The pods are equipped with large virtual ‘eyes’. The eyes seek out pedestrians, appearing to look directly at them. This helps signal to pedestrians that the vehicle has ‘seen’ them and will take action to avoid them. Engineers and cognitive psychiatrists record the levels of trust in the pedestrians before and after the pod makes ‘eye contact’. They then gauge whether the eyes generate greater confidence that the vehicle will stop. system, and a third generation that also builds solar charging capabilities into the hood.