BY the end of this year, robot cars will be tested on public roads in the United Kingdom (英國), the government says. The cars are driverless – they drive themselves!
The robot car, developed by a team of Oxford University researchers, has a system of sensors and cameras to detect its surroundings. It can drive safely at a set speed without bumping into other cars. It can memorise regular journeys using lasers and small cameras too.
Although the robot can run on its own, there will be a back-up driver inside the vehicle during tests. If anything goes wrong, the driver can take over controls quickly.
Other groups of scientists are developing driverless cars too. For example, Google, the Internet giant, has already tested its model on public roads over more than 300,000 miles (about 482,800 km). The company believes that driverless cars would greatly improve quality of life in the future.