New Business Ideas – Tires & Parts News https://tiresandparts.net Your News Source for Everything Automotive Wed, 19 Feb 2020 05:39:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.0.8 Renewable Synthetic Fuels Can Transform Outlook for Conventional Vehicles https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/renewable-synthetic-fuels-can-transform-outlook-for-conventional-vehicles/ https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/renewable-synthetic-fuels-can-transform-outlook-for-conventional-vehicles/#respond Wed, 29 Jan 2020 08:58:14 +0000 https://tiresandparts.net/?p=29779 Sustainability and emissions have become a matter of grave concern for automotive manufacturers. In light of the possibility that about 50 percent of the vehicles that will be on the road across the globe in 2030 have already been sold, we have to accept that most of them are likely to run on either gasoline […]

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Sustainability and emissions have become a matter of grave concern for automotive manufacturers. In light of the possibility that about 50 percent of the vehicles that will be on the road across the globe in 2030 have already been sold, we have to accept that most of them are likely to run on either gasoline or diesel engines. It is true that the use of electric vehicles has become more prevalent. Teslas are no longer a rare sight, but even such electric vehicles depend on electricity for recharging their batteries. The source of this electricity might not be completely emissions free. Conventional vehicles will also be expected to play their part in cutting carbon dioxide emissions and one way to do this would be through the use of renewable synthetic fuels.

The manufacture of synthetic fuels has already proved to be possible. Electricity derived from renewable sources is used to obtain hydrogen from water. Then they add carbon. Finally, they combine carbon dioxide and hydrogen gas to make synthetic gasoline, diesel, gas, or kerosene. It has been proved that production of such synthetic fuels is possible, but in order to become commercially viable, this needs to be done in a large scale manner. Currently, capacity is lacking and it needs to be scaled up rapidly to meet demand. Incentives could take the form of fuel quotas, offsetting carbon dioxide savings against fleet consumption, and long-term planning certainty.

As is clear from their name, renewable synthetic fuels are made exclusively with energy obtained from renewable sources like the sun or wind. In the best-case scenario, manufacturers capture the carbon dioxide needed to produce this fuel from the atmosphere, thus converting a greenhouse gas into a resource. This creates a cycle in which the carbon dioxide that is released into the atmosphere by burning renewable synthetic fuels is reused to produce new fuels. Vehicles on the road, when powered by synthetic fuel, are hence ultimately climate neutral.

The Fischer-Tropsch process produces renewable synthetic fuels that can be used with today’s infrastructure and engines. Experts call them “drop-in” synthetic fuels because they can be deployed without first making any modifications to the infrastructure and vehicles, and they have an immediate impact and deliver faster results. They may also be added to conventional fuel to help reduce carbondioxide emissions from vehicles which are already on the road currently.

In this manner, these fuels could contribute to the cause even before they are ramped up for larger-scale production. The chemical structures and basic properties of gasoline remain intact, so even vintage cars can run on synthetic gas.

Renewable synthetic fuels are likely to become a lot more affordable when production capacities are ramped the cost of electricity obtained from renewable sources comes down. Present studies suggest that a pure fuel cost can as little as one euro per liter by 2050. The cost disadvantage of these fuels when compared with fossil fuels could be significantly reduced if value was ascribed to the environmental advantage of renewable synthetic fuels. The fact that they are compatible with today’s infrastructure and automotive technology gives them an edge over other alternative powertrains.

When renewable energy is used, synthetic fuels can be produced in unlimited quantities. Sufficient renewable energy can be generated worldwide to produce fuel that can then be stored and transported relatively easily.
Synthetic fuels are produced with renewable energy. This process yields a gas or liquid. And that makes renewable synthetic fuels a good medium for storing large amounts of renewable energy and even transporting it across the globe cost-effectively.


This article is based on a feature written by Arda Arslan, Regional Director for Automotive Aftermarket, Bosch Middle East, Turkey and Iran

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Trukker set to be ‘Uber for trucks’ in the Middle East https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/trukker-set-to-be-uber-for-trucks-in-the-middle-east/ https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/trukker-set-to-be-uber-for-trucks-in-the-middle-east/#respond Sun, 26 Jan 2020 07:47:22 +0000 https://tiresandparts.net/?p=29757 A new startup called Trukker is aiming to become an “Uber for trucks” in the Middle East”. Established by Gaurav Biswas and his old school friend, Pradeep Mallavarapu, who used to work in IT, the startup was set up with the goal of minimizing the time trucks spent lying empty beside the road while haulage […]

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A new startup called Trukker is aiming to become an “Uber for trucks” in the Middle East”. Established by Gaurav Biswas and his old school friend, Pradeep Mallavarapu, who used to work in IT, the startup was set up with the goal of minimizing the time trucks spent lying empty beside the road while haulage companies struggled to get cargoes to their destinations on time. This supply-demand gap arose mainly due to the fact that about 85 percent of the trucks are owned by one-man firms. According to figures released by Saudi Arabia’s Public Transport Authority, biggest fleet owner has only 2500 trucks which h is very little in view of the fact that there are 1.3 million trucks on Saudi roads..

The two co-owners of Trukker have just the right track record to make the company a success story. While Gaurav Biswas left his job as a director at a construction consultancy called Aecom to set up the company, Mallavarapu is an IT expert who developed the technology needed to run Trukker, which as a platform to connect truckers and end users. The pair started with baby steps and invested their own money to a significant extent before seeking venture capital. Trukker was initially launched in 2016 and began by offering home moving services. As the company has grown, moving services now account for less than 5 percent of its business. Trukker has progressed to moving domestic cargo across the UAE, and later into long distance transport of cargo across international borders. Currently, over 70 per cent of the company’s revenue is derived from long-haul trucking across the GCC,” he said. Road freight within the GCC market alone is worth USD 46 billion and hence the company has plenty of scope for growth. Trukker’s app averages about 1,000-1,200 transactions per day, most of which are deal with transport of cargo in the UAE and Saudi Arabia.

Drivers are attracted to the app due to the offer of regular jobs and guaranteed cash payments, while companies which use the app’s services value Trukker’s promises of reliable drivers and competitive rates. Hence, Trukker has been able to attract companies of all sizes, including big-name firms like Unilever and Procter & Gamble. The app currently features over 15,000 member trucks and 200 clients.
The company is based in offices at Abu Dhabi Global Market Square and currently has a presence in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. The current plan is to expand operations to Bahrain, Jordan and Oman by the end of the first quarter of 2020.

Leading venture finance companies like Saudi Technology Ventures, International Finance Corporation, Middle East Venture Partners, Riyad Taqnia Fund, the Oman Technology Fund, Iliad Partners, Shorooq Ventures and Endeavour Catalyst Fund have invested in Trukker and the company is poised to grow at a steady pace in the coming years.

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Ford to Introduce Technology that Warns about Road Hazards https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/ford-to-introduce-technology-that-warns-about-road-hazards/ https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/ford-to-introduce-technology-that-warns-about-road-hazards/#respond Wed, 22 Jan 2020 14:00:43 +0000 https://tiresandparts.net/?p=29742 Ford has announced that it plans to fit 80 per cent of its 2020 vehicles in the European market with technology that has the capability to warn drivers about any potential traffic jams, accidents and bad weather. Ford conducted a successful trial of the new technology called Local Hazard Information Technology (LHI) on its Ford […]

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Ford has announced that it plans to fit 80 per cent of its 2020 vehicles in the European market with technology that has the capability to warn drivers about any potential traffic jams, accidents and bad weather. Ford conducted a successful trial of the new technology called Local Hazard Information Technology (LHI) on its Ford Puma in Europe and plans to slowly roll out LHI on most of its new models. The system works by collating data from other connected road users, emergency services and the authorities and transmitting it directly from the cloud to the vehicle. Motorists get the alerts in the form of information displayed on the car’s dashboard display.

Peter Geffers, Manger Connected Vehicles, Platform and Products at Ford of Europe said in an interview to MailOnline that Ford was the first vehicle manufacturer to offer this kind of technology. According to Ford, the technology will leverage information from other Ford cars to alert other users. Vehicles will be equipped with the FordPass Connect embedded modem which is connected to the cloud through a 4G connection and will thus automatically transmit the information to other users. An alert can be triggered by diverse events including airbag deployment, activation of hazard warning lights and use of windscreen wipers in the case of bad weather.

Ford said LHI could be used for events ranging from hailstorms to sudden floods to even landslides. Information derived from external sources including official police notifications will also be curated and distributed.

While current apps require manual input, in the case of the LHI, all this will be done autonomously. Motorists need not have any concerns about privacy as the information and data is anonymized and protected and drivers have the option of choosing to share their location with Ford for it to function properly. The channel between the vehicle and cloud is encrypted and there would be no sharing of trip data. ‘The customer needs to share their location with Ford in order to provide the location for the sensor data and to determine if a hazard is relevant for a vehicle or not. A customer can use the customer connectivity settings menu to turn off the location. Information is shared anonymously between the Ford cloud and Vodafone cloud.

Joerg Beyer, executive director of engineering at Ford in Europe, said that what made the LHI system different is that it depends on the connection between the cars through the Internet of Things rather than
on third party apps. The warnings provided through the system are specific, relevant and tailored with the purpose of improving the motorist’s specific journey.

According to Geffers said, the all-new Ford Puma would be the first vehicle to have the feature, as part of a free two-year subscription with other Ford products set to follow throughout 2020.

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McMaster University Team Develops New Technique for Recycling Old Tires https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/mcmaster-university-team-develops-new-technique-for-recycling-old-tires/ https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/mcmaster-university-team-develops-new-technique-for-recycling-old-tires/#respond Sun, 19 Jan 2020 09:25:56 +0000 https://tiresandparts.net/?p=29695 The Brooke Research Group at McMaster University has developed a new technique that can be used for the recycling of old tires. Considering that about three billion automobile tires were made across the globe just in 2019, the impact that a viable recycling method can have on the environment is tremendous. While some end-of life […]

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The Brooke Research Group at McMaster University has developed a new technique that can be used for the recycling of old tires. Considering that about three billion automobile tires were made across the globe just in 2019, the impact that a viable recycling method can have on the environment is tremendous. While some end-of life tires are recycled for fuel in the cement industry or converted into rubber crumb to be sed as a reinforcing agent in children’s playgrounds or as fillers for road construction, these methods are really not very efficient. The majority of used tires end up in landfills where they are serious fire hazards and cause high risk of contamination to the environment through leachate (the liquid that percolates through waste sites and into the ground).

Before the development of steel-belt and radial tires 50 years ago, tires were expected to last only for 20,000 to 40,000 kilometers. With the development of advanced tire technologies, tires can now last for as many as 100,000 kilometers. This durability and strength of tires that are currently available are just the properties that make them difficult to recycle.
New ways to break down tires.

The Brook Research Group at McMaster University helmed by Michael Adrian Brook came up with an efficient and mild process that leverages silicone chemistry to break the strong sulfur-to-sulfur bonds seen in tires. The silicones selectively cut the sulfur-sulfur bonds, leaving behind only the organic chains which are easy to isolate. This makes it easy to reuse the tires to make new products. The process was originally developed by the team to make new silicones using very small quantities of a catalyst. It has now been modified to make petroleum-based tires more sustainable by making them more suitable for recycling.

The chemical process involves initially cutting the used tires into sections and converting them into powdered crumb. This process is similar to the one that is currently used in commercial tire recovery plants. The next step involves producing a mild, rapid reaction by heating the powdered crumb with specific silicones at 100C for 45 minutes. This heating process converts about 90 per cent of the available organic materials into a pale yellow oil. The remaining substances, which include inorganic carbon, silica, metal and polyester cord fibers can be easily removed from this yellow oil through filtration.

The oils recovered from used tires are very similar in nature to the virgin polymers that are initially used to make new tires. The McMaster University team also came up with ways that the oils recovered from the used tires could be repurposed.

In one case, the recovered polymers were converted back into new rubbers while the inorganic residue obtained after filtration could also be reused as a reinforcing agent in the new rubber.
The team proposes to continue its work to explore more products that can be made from the recovered polymers. It would also focus on research to reduce the quantity of catalyst needed to improve the economics of the process.

Using the new process, it would now be possible to efficiently convert the rubber in the used tires into other useful materials while also solving a thorny environmental problem.

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Brazilian Artist Turns Discarded Tires into Cute Beds for Animals https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/brazilian-artist-turns-discarded-tires-into-cute-beds-for-animals/ https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/brazilian-artist-turns-discarded-tires-into-cute-beds-for-animals/#respond Mon, 13 Jan 2020 09:57:21 +0000 https://tiresandparts.net/?p=29644 Only a true artist could have come up with such a brilliant idea that in one stroke helps remove environmental waste while creating something that is highly useful and beautiful. Used tires are generally considered as object that contribute to environmental waste with end-of-life tires being piled up in heaps on roadsides or creating a […]

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Only a true artist could have come up with such a brilliant idea that in one stroke helps remove environmental waste while creating something that is highly useful and beautiful. Used tires are generally considered as object that contribute to environmental waste with end-of-life tires being piled up in heaps on roadsides or creating a stench as they are burned. Amarildo Silva, a 23-year-old Brazilian artist, came up with the creative of transforming these unwanted tires into truly adorable beds for animals by refurbishing and upcycling them with minimal cost.
Silva, who lives in Campina, Brazil was inspired by the sight of stray dogs who used old tires as makeshift beds. He felt that they felt more at home when they used scrap tires as beds and thus benefited from a better sleeping experience. This led him to go about collecting old tires from the streets. He piled them up in his backyard and even started stockpiling them in one room of his house which was set aside for this purpose.

The upcycling process requires immense effort. Each tire is first thoroughly cleaned, cut and given a fresh coat of paint. Then, a tiny mattress is installed in its center. The outcome is a shiny, adorable, new bed that any animal would be proud to have. Silva spends a lot of time personalizing each tire for its new owner, painting them with unique designs and writing the name of the animal that will own the bed.
Amarildo Silva has been selling these tire beds for the past two years and achieved the twin goals of cleaning up the streets of his city and making a tidy income for
his family. The beds soon became popular and Silva started his own business called Caominhas Pets and took to Instagram to promote his products. He has since sold over 500 tire beds. He also started converting tires into flowerpots and garden containers.

Silva believes his business can contribute to making the world more sustainable. He also spends considerable time mentoring students at local public schools and volunteering to help abandoned animals.

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Recycled Tires Used for Self-repairing Roads and Pavements https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/recycled-tires-used-for-self-repairing-roads-and-pavements/ https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/recycled-tires-used-for-self-repairing-roads-and-pavements/#respond Fri, 03 Jan 2020 06:32:52 +0000 https://tiresandparts.net/?p=29561 One issue with rainy weather is that it causes a lot of damage to roads resulting in huge potholes and the need for regular and costly maintenance. Israel Antonio Briseño Carmona, a Civil engineering student at Coahuila Autonomous University (UAdeC) came up with an award-winning solution that involves the use of recycled tires. He used […]

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One issue with rainy weather is that it causes a lot of damage to roads resulting in huge potholes and the need for regular and costly maintenance. Israel Antonio Briseño Carmona, a Civil engineering student at Coahuila Autonomous University (UAdeC) came up with an award-winning solution that involves the use of recycled tires. He used end-of-life tires to make flooring that can repair itself when it comes into contact with water.
The recycled tires are combined with additives to make a truly innovative surface that regenerates if any damage is caused by water. Carmona won one of the James Dyson-Mexico Foundation awards for his invention that can significantly help to solve the problem of damaged potholes and sidewalks in rainy weather.

In heavy rainfall, rain filters through the pavement and reaches its base, resulting in the formation of small cracks. With the passage of cars and pedestrians over the surface, these small cracks become progressively deeper till it reaches a point where there are large potholes. Carmona’s idea was to turn this around and make the road from a material that can use water to recover from damage instead of one that is damaged by water. He explained that he was inspired by the idea of concrete that regenerates with bacteria.

The regeneration is the outcome of the use of a putty. This putty is formed by heating the rubber sourced from end-of-life tires and other additives into one homogenous mixture. When this putty comes into contact with water, it creates calcium silicates – one of the components of the regeneration and physical-chemical improvement of the pavement, thus healing any cracks.
There might be other such self-regenerating pavement materials in the world, but there are none that use water as a catalyst element and which incorporate the use of use of recycled tires for its production. In Mexico, 80 percent of the pavement is asphalt and 20 percent is hydraulic concrete.

The use of such self-healing rubber sidewalks could solve three problems in one go- that of recycling old tires, the high cost of road maintenance costs and the high number of accidents related to poor road maintenance
Currently, Briseño’s material, Paflec is in the process of being certified by the National Organization for the Standardization and Certification of Construction and Building (ONNCCE). Briseño then plans to offer his invention to the Ministry of Communications and Transportation, waiting for it to apply on all roads in Mexico.

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Jaguar Land Rover Makes 3D-Printed Paw to Test Suitability of Models for Dogs https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/jaguar-land-rover-makes-3d-printed-paw-to-test-suitability-of-models-for-dogs/ https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/jaguar-land-rover-makes-3d-printed-paw-to-test-suitability-of-models-for-dogs/#respond Sun, 29 Dec 2019 09:21:19 +0000 https://tiresandparts.net/?p=29425 Jaguar Land Rover has developed a unique 3D-printed dog paw that engineers can use to assess the durability of future cars. All they would need is a little help from Yogi the Labrador and the new Land Rover Defender. The ‘RoboYogi’ paw was conceptualized to help test the ability of the rear bumper to tolerate […]

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Jaguar Land Rover has developed a unique 3D-printed dog paw that engineers can use to assess the durability of future cars. All they would need is a little help from Yogi the Labrador and the new Land Rover Defender.
The ‘RoboYogi’ paw was conceptualized to help test the ability of the rear bumper to tolerate the damage done when a dog’s claws scrapes the paint before and after dog walks. The results indicated that it can take as much a decade’s worth of use or rather abuse by dogs. This highlighted how Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles are designed in a manner that can meet the requirements imposed by their owners’ lifestyles.

It was Yogi the Labrador, a resident at the National Guide Dog Breeding Centre, who had the immense responsibility of jumping in and out of the new Land Rover Defender boot. Every step of his was recorded by pressure mapping technology. The data thus obtained made it possible for the team to benchmark this real-world outdoor scenario against ‘RoboYogi’. The “RoboYogi” was designed based on the size of a mid-sized dog and replicates the pressure caused by the claws and pads on its feet as it clambers in and out.

Nine-year-old Yogi’s paw was used to model and 3D-print a spring-loaded replica, which allowed the claws to follow contours and apply pressure evenly across the bumper. Spring-loaded claws proved to be cost-effective as they can be replaced easily.

This life-like replica of the paw is now used by the Jaguar Land Rover team for a standard 5,000 cycle abrasion test. During the test, ‘RoboYogi’ scratches the panel at random ten times followed by a linear scratch to one side, and the process is repeated over again.

The new Land Rover Defender was the ideal test vehicle thanks to its iconic side-hinged door featuring a flat rear bumper that dogs could climb onto, compared to the more conventional split tailgate or rounded boot opening seen in other Land Rover models.

The new method was developed collaboratively across Jaguar Land Rover by experts belonging to the Materials Engineering team, who collaborated closely with the Additive Manufacturing and Robotic Engineering teams.
Julie Nicholls, Senior Engineer in Materials Engineering at Jaguar Land Rover, explained: “Our performance testing covers plenty of scenarios that our cosmetic parts are exposed to, but sometimes we have to think outside the laboratory to come up with bespoke solutions. Creating globally renowned vehicles means applying a quality mindset at every stage of a product’s lifecycle to ensure we meet the needs of our customers’ lifestyles. In this case we were able to achieve it by getting a dog, printing a paw and using a robot.”

Land Rover has a history of offering a range of Pet Packs on the Discovery, including a full height luggage partition, a loadspace rubber mat, and loadspace liner tray.

Suzanne Boggan, Dog Care and Welfare Supervisor from the National Guide Dog Breeding Centre, said: “Whether you are the proud owner of a pet dog or – as is the case with our dogs – they play an even more vital working role, we recognize the importance of working with responsible manufacturers like Jaguar Land Rover to ensure vehicles are fit to carry animals safely. We were delighted Yogi could lend a paw to the engineers – we hope it will help more design teams make future models easier for our canine companions to get in and out of.”

The Jaguar Land Rover Additive Manufacturing Centre makes over 80,000 components on an annual basis for a diverse range of applications including functional prototyping, design mock-ups and manufacturing assembly aids and fixtures. Jaguar Land Rover is also able to 3D print parts for production cars with the Jaguar XE SV Project 8, which is positioned as the most extreme performance Jaguar ever being one of the first vehicles to use them.

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Research Team Develop Games that can be Played in Autonomous Cars https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/research-team-develop-games-that-can-be-played-in-autonomous-cars/ https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/research-team-develop-games-that-can-be-played-in-autonomous-cars/#respond Thu, 19 Dec 2019 09:25:23 +0000 https://tiresandparts.net/?p=29428 A research team at Waterloo University in Canada has developed a series of video games that passengers in the autonomous cars of the future could one day play with each other. With the outlook for autonomous vehicle technology brightening day by day, researchers have now come up with potential ways in which passengers who have […]

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A research team at Waterloo University in Canada has developed a series of video games that passengers in the autonomous cars of the future could one day play with each other.

With the outlook for autonomous vehicle technology brightening day by day, researchers have now come up with potential ways in which passengers who have plenty of free time while riding in such vehicles could entertain themselves. A research team at Canada’s Waterloo University has developed three games that could passengers in cars which are near each other on the road could play.

The games were revealed during a study that was presented at a recent conference and the games are meant to be used in vehicles which have Level 3 autonomy or higher. Level 3 autonomy calls for very little involvement on the part of the driver. Tesla’s famous Autopilot exhibits Level 2 autonomy which means that the driver needs to focus on the road even when the car is driving itself.

“As autonomous vehicles start to replace conventional vehicles, occupants will have much more free time than they used to,” said Matthew Lakier, a PhD student who was a part of the research team that developed the games. He went on to add that people in autonomous vehicles would be able to play the games with other people in autonomous vehicles nearby while the vehicles are driving themselves. The games would be superimposed on the actual vehicle display so that drivers would not have to take their eyes off the road.

‘People were happy to play with strangers’

The researchers found that in the case of previous studies related to autonomous vehicles, very little attention had been given to cross-car games. Hence, they went on to develop a virtual reality driving simulator to render the car cabin, outside environment and roadway with artificially controlled cars and intelligent computer-controlled players.

This environment facilitated the rapid prototyping of in-car games that could include full window head-up displays (HUDs), head tracking and different input methods. 12 people participated in playing the simulated cross-car games with instances where the driver would need to occasionally take over.

“Overall, the participants rated the games highly in immersion, there was a positive response to the incorporation of HUDs in the games, and the different game styles did not significantly impact the takeover task completion time. All games were popular for different reasons,” Lakier said.

Lakier concluded by saying that people showed no reluctance to play with strangers leading to the formation of impromptu relationships with other people on the road.

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FLIR Systems Develops Thermal Sensor Camera Technology to Make Autonomous Cars More Viable https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/flir-systems-develops-thermal-sensor-camera-technology-to-make-autonomous-cars-more-viable/ https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/flir-systems-develops-thermal-sensor-camera-technology-to-make-autonomous-cars-more-viable/#respond Thu, 12 Dec 2019 09:11:26 +0000 https://tiresandparts.net/?p=29422 FLIR Systems highlighted the new thermal sensor camera technology it has developed to make self-driving cars more viable during the 2019 edition of the Los Angeles auto Show. The demonstrations were held in downtown Los Angeles during the show. According to the company, thermal sensor cameras are four times more reliable than their conventional counterparts […]

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FLIR Systems highlighted the new thermal sensor camera technology it has developed to make self-driving cars more viable during the 2019 edition of the Los Angeles auto Show. The demonstrations were held in downtown Los Angeles during the show. According to the company, thermal sensor cameras are four times more reliable than their conventional counterparts when it comes to the identification and classification of pedestrians while the cost of such technology is low enough to make them viable for use in self-driving vehicles.

Thermal sensors have been widely used for military applications in the United States and focus on detecting the heat that emanates from objects. The technology is more efficient in detecting obstacles on the road across various depths of field. This is because the resolution of the images that are obtained using thermal cameras is a lot higher than in the case of images sourced from radar and lidar systems, especially for the detection of pedestrians.

All pedestrians emit heat and according to FLIR Chief Engineer, Chris Posch, using thermal sensor cameras, pedestrians can be seen quite easily irrespective of whether of the time of the day and weather conditions, thus making it safer for both the car and the pedestrians on the road.

The technology has also proven to be quite reliable in the case of classification of obstacles on the road into pedestrians, bicycles, and vehicles even in total darkness at distances which are almost four times the distance of a typical vehicle’s headlight range. Really challenging lighting conditions like shadows, foggy weather and sun glare seems to have no adverse impact on the accuracy of this technology, according to FLIR.

Currently, FLIR’s thermal sensors are used as part of driver warning systems for many leading carmakers including Volkswagen, Audi, General Motors, Peugeot, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz. One key barrier to the widespread adoption of the technology has been the cost factor. But according to Posch, the technology has advanced at a really rapid pace, bringing costs down to the point where it is now hundreds of dollars instead of thousands of dollars for a thermal camera. It has thus reached the stage where it is affordable for the mass market.

FLIR is now collecting thermal data in key metropolitan areas in the United States as part of its development strategy, with the goal of covering common seasonal driving conditions at all hours of the day. In future, it will collect data related to several large US and global cities with regional customization to offer accelerated thermal testing as part of its strategy to integrate thermal cameras in the overall sensor systems for autonomous vehicle companies.

The main doubts that potential customers have about autonomous vehicles is their ability to detect the presence of pedestrians. This is why FLIR’s advanced thermal camera technology can prove to be a significant breakthrough that can facilitate large scale acceptance and use of self-driving vehicles.

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Bridgestone Develops New High Strength Rubber Polymer https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/bridgestone-develops-new-high-strength-rubber-polymer/ https://tiresandparts.net/news/new-business-ideas/bridgestone-develops-new-high-strength-rubber-polymer/#respond Wed, 04 Dec 2019 07:51:47 +0000 https://tiresandparts.net/?p=29339 Back in May 2018, Bridgestone had announced that it had developed the first polymer in the world to bond rubber and resins at the molecular level. The most notable characteristic about the new polymer is its unprecedented durability. When compared to natural rubber, the new polymer exhibits a crack resistance that is over five times […]

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Back in May 2018, Bridgestone had announced that it had developed the first polymer in the world to bond rubber and resins at the molecular level. The most notable characteristic about the new polymer is its unprecedented durability. When compared to natural rubber, the new polymer exhibits a crack resistance that is over five times higher, abrasion resistance that is more than 2.5 times higher, and tensile strength that is more than 1.5 times higher. Natural rubber is significantly more durable than synthetic rubber.

Bridgestone has chosen to name this new polymer SUSYM and plans to promote usage of the new moniker as part of its efforts to promote the use of the new material as a next-generation polymer material. It could even possibly be used for advances in several fields in addition to its use as a material for tire production.

SUSYM marks the next advance after Bridgestone developed High Strength Rubber, a hybrid material that the company used to bond synthetic rubber components like butadiene and isoprene, with resin components such as ethylene, at the molecular level. For this process, Bridgestone used its proprietary novel gadolinium (Gd) catalyst via copolymerization.

SUSYM offers the combined benefits of the high levels of durability and resistance that natural rubber provides as well as considerably higher levels of performance in terms of puncture resistance, recyclability, repairability and resistance to low temperatures.

SUSYM has the ability to improve performance in these areas while helping to retain the flexibility of rubber and the durability of resin. This makes the material suitable for use in different fields. According to Bridgestone, SUSYM boasts the high levels of durability and resistance of conventional rubber and is therefore capable of realizing the various types of performance required in tires while using fewer resources. The material can also be recycled. Bridgestone plans to collaborate with a wide range of companies and organizations to proceed with further research and development of applying the benefits of this proprietary technology.
Bridgestone had showcased a concept tire utilizing numerous SUSYM functions and materials at the recent Tokyo Motor Show.

Proprietary characteristics of SUSYM:

1. Puncture resistance. SUSYM is resistant to punctures when strong forces are applied to a single point, although it may change shape. The company anticipates this feature will result in SUSYM being used for various applications other than high-strength rubber and tire materials.
2. Fixability (recyclability, repairability). Even if SUSYM materials are punctured, holes can be easily repaired by applying heat. Therefore, the company expects SUSYM will be used as a new rubber material that can be recycled multiple times even if damaged.
3. Low-temperature impact resistance. Conventional rubber hardens and becomes brittle at low temperatures, making it easy to break through impacts. SUSYM maintains the flexibility of rubber even at low temperatures, creating resistance to impacts and giving this material the potential to be used under low temperatures.

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