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Research & Testing
Researchers at the Harvard Kennedy School's Taubman Center for State and Local Government outline potential policy issues that will arise as autonomous vehicles become more popular. The authors recommend five policies cities can implement to get out in front of autonomous vehicle deployments to ensure that autonomous vehicles can support community goals.
"The advent of automated driving technology is poised to transform the trucking industry in the years and decades to come, but it is clear that autonomous trucks will not be ready to handle all driving tasks and conditions anytime soon. Instead, the developers of this technology are working to build a future where drivers and automation work hand in hand to transport freight more safely and efficiently."
Postmates gained approval to begin testing delivery robots in San Francisco.
Cargo drones are an emerging delivery technology that range in sizes from single item delivery capacities to plane-sized drones.
Food delivery service Postmates is building delivery robots to reduce reliance on vehicles. This endeavor faces many of the same challenges as autonomous vehicles, such as safety and public perception.
The United States Parcel Service (UPS) wants to expand its Flight Forward program to include private home drone delivery service.
This resource examines how new technologies in AVs will affect traffic behavior, and how these new behaviors will impact congestion, capacity, and efficiency of road networks.
This paper provides a review of recent studies of rail transit's impact on property values and discusses the types of impacts rail transit can have on properties. It also outlines the reasons for contradictions between results of different studies.
This article discusses an experiment conducted to investigate the factors contributing to travel mode choice. The experiment found that subjects were more inclined to chose cars over other forms of transportation, even when another form of transportation might have been more ideal based on cost or travel time. This demonstrates the concept of car stickiness, where travelers are heavily biased towards traveling in cars over other forms of transportation.
Ford will have a fully autonomous vehicle in commercial operation by 2021. Ford's vehicle will not have a steering wheel, gas pedal, or brake pedal, and will operate within geo-fenced areas as part of a ride sharing or ride hailing program.
Autonomous vehicles are on their way to becoming the next leap in technological advancement. Sensor technology, computing capacity, and artificial intelligence are some of the main technologies that need major development to make autonomous vehicles feasible to adopt on a large scale.
Two fatalities involving autonomous vehicles (AVs) have raised the prominence of safety concerns within AV testing. Many states have considered or enacted regulations on AV testing, while availability of data collected on testing remains difficult to access.
This report develops a framework for measuring safety in automated vehicles. It ranges in considerations from measuring safety in artificial development phases to deployment phases.
The purpose of this report is to analyze potential impacts and offer recommendations for the cities of Gresham and Eugene, OR, to understand the potential impacts of new mobility technologies – with an emphasis on autonomous vehicles (AVs) – and prepare a policy and programmatic response. While Gresham and Eugene are case studies, it provides mid-sized communities information on how new mobility services could impact their communities and what they can do about it, from broad strategies to specific policy responses. While this work focuses on the various new mobility and goods delivery services that currently exist, the framework that is discussed here is also applicable to emerging technologies that haven’t yet been introduced, such as autonomous vehicles (AVs).
The Mcity driverless shuttle began operating on the University of Michigan's campus in June 2018. This report focuses on how the researchers collected data and designed the project in order to achieve the project goals of leaning how people react to riding in the shuttles and a how road users interact with the driverless shuttles.
"In 2017, the City of Arlington contracted with the autonomous shuttle company EasyMile to begin the first self-driving shuttle program open to the public in the United States. From August 2017 to August 2018, the Milo vehicles operated on off-street trails that connect major entertainment venues with remote parking areas. The program’s name represents mile zero - the point at which guest arrive at their destination. Milo operated at over 110 events during the program with a perfect safety record."
Motion sickness is a serious consideration on any car trip where you’re not driving. So what are we supposed to do in self-driving vehicles? Researchers are finally looking into this question with an experiment designed to see just what makes people like us so sick.
With the potential to save nearly 30,000 lives per year in the United States, autonomous vehicles portend the most significant advance in auto safety history by shifting the focus from minimization of post-crash injury to collision prevention. I have delineated the important public health implications of autonomous vehicles and provided a brief analysis of a critically important ethical issue inherent in autonomous vehicle design. The broad expertise, ethical principles, and values of public health should be brought to bear on a wide range of issues pertaining to autonomous vehicles.
"Seven companies operating electric scooters in Chicago have been fined by the city for not living up to the terms of their pilot program contract."
The EV Ecosystem Strategy builds on the City’s experience with electric vehicles, or “EVs”, since 2007; and, formalizes the City’s role in the expansion of charging options until the year 2021. As part of the Renewable City Strategy, the City committed to developing an electric vehicle infrastructure strategy to support the transition to renewably-powered transportation, this is the first five-year strategy to make that a reality.
To gain a deeper understanding of retailers’ focus, concerns and investment plans, Zebra conducted a global research study across a wide spectrum of retail segments, including: specialty stores, department stores, apparel merchants, supermarkets, electronics, home improvement and drugstore chains. The results of this study are shared in this 2017 Retail Vision Study.
Transit bus automation could deliver many potential benefits, but transit agencies need additional research and policy guidance to make informed deployment decisions. Although funding and policy constraints may play a role, there is also a reasonable unwillingness to risk public funding or to undertake new operational models without a full understanding of the approach or without federal leadership and guidance. The purpose of this report is to define a five-year Strategic Transit Automation Research Plan that will establish a research and demonstration framework to move the transit industry forward. Key components of the Plan include conducting enabling research, identifying and resolving barriers to deployment, leveraging technologies from other sectors, demonstrating market-ready technologies, and transferring knowledge to the transit stakeholder community.
This municipal action guide is meant to give cities the ability to better understand and approach the impending roll out of autonomous vehicles in their cities. We hope to lay out the current typologies of how cities and other levels of government are working together with the private sector to begin to integrate self-driving cars onto the roadways.
This resolution by the Governor of Washington speaks support for the testing of autonomous vehicles in the state of Washington.
This report seeks to represent a comprehensive assessment of energy savings potential for heavy trucks.
"The purpose of this report is to provide an overview of the state of automated vehicle (AV) technology in transit. The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) wishes to know what AV technology is currently available that could be used in transit with an eye towards possible demonstration projects."
"In this paper, we present a project in Munich, Germany, where the last mile package delivery is carried out by a CEP company by cargo bikes and eBikes. To this end, two containers and one truck-trailer are placed in the city center which function as depot stations for the parcels to be delivered nearby. We analyze the delivery data, present an optimization scheme for finding suitable container locations, and simulate the routes conducted by cargo bikes for an average day. It can be concluded that the presented approach is a feasible solution for the package delivery in densely populated cities. The vehicle mileage covered by diesel trucks per day is significantly reduced from 180 km to 45 km, approximately."
This chapter is intended for the reader who wants to understand what vehicle automation is, its main research questions, and what are its main implications. We also provide guidance on the methods that have been used or could be used to assess its impacts, hence allowing future research on this topic.
Through a review of long-range transportation plans and interviews with planners, this article examines how large metropolitan planning organizations are preparing for autonomous vehicles. In just a few years, the prospect of commercially available self-driving cars and trucks has gone from a futurist fantasy to a likely near-term reality. However, uncertainties about the new technology and its relationship to daily investment decisions have kept mention of self-driving cars out of nearly all long-range transportation plans.
Waymo, the self-driving car unit of Google parent Alphabet Inc, urged the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to “promptly” remove regulatory barriers for cars without steering wheels and brake pedals.
"Completing urban freight deliveries is increasingly a challenge in congested urban areas, particularly when delivery trucks are required to meet time windows. Depending on the route characteristics, Electric Assist (EA) cargo bicycles may serve as an economically viable alternative to delivery trucks. The purpose of this paper is to compare the delivery route cost trade-offs between box delivery trucks and EA cargo bicycles that have the same route and delivery characteristics, and to explore the question, under what conditions do EA cargo bikes perform at a lower cost than typical delivery trucks?"
Nuro, now a part of Waymo, released an autonomous driving grocery delivery service in Scottsdale. The partnership with Fry's grocery charges customers only $6 for delivery and will have two available vehicles on the streets for deliveries.
Uber Eats will now deliver food to customers in the most unexpected of places—restaurants. The food delivery and pick-up app's "Dine-in" feature is now being pilot-tested in Dallas, Austin, Phoenix and San Diego, according to an Uber spokesperson.
Website provides information for the testing of AVs with a driver, including: adopted regulations, information for manufacturers, testing permit holders, AV collision reports, AV disengagement reports, previous hearings and workshops, and background on AVs in California.
This paper is focused on the analysis of the four Italian pilots, three in Genoa and one in Milan, highlighting the peculiarities of each one and investigating the data collected in the 12 months test. Each pilot represents a specific and well defined case study. The data used for the elaboration of this paper have been collected by pilot companies and, for the Italian pilots, elaborated by Poliedra – Politecnico di Milano.
This paper presents ten key challenge areas that need to be at the center of automated vehicle discussions across all sectors and stakeholders, along with a glossary of key terms. It is intended to serve as a discussion guide and orientation piece for people entering the conversation from a wide variety of perspectives, including advocacy, public policy, research, injury prevention, and technology developers.
This report summarizes findings from a three-year collaboration between the World Economic Forum and The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) to explore how autonomous vehicles could reshape the future of urban mobility. The project built on the collective insights generated from the Autonomous and Urban Mobility Working Group (Working Group) of the System Initiative on Shaping the Future of Mobility, composed of roughly 35 business executives from diverse industries (including automotive, technology, logistics, insurance, utilities and infrastructure) that convened for 10 full-day workshops and numerous conference calls.
One of the big promises of self-driving vehicles is the idea that autonomous vehicles will liberate people from driving. In this vision of the future, passengers will scan news reports on phones and tablets, pour-over notes and briefings for important meetings, and view videos on their handheld devices. They will reclaim the hours once wasted clinging to a steering wheel. Unless they end up developing a headache or becoming dizzy, drowsy, or nauseated.
"Cruise, the startup General Motors acquired to develop its self-driving car, will launch an autonomous taxi service on the gnarly, crowded streets of San Francisco," CEO Dan Ammann said Wednesday. It will not, however, do so by the end of this year, the deadline it set for itself in 2017. Instead, Cruise will spend the rest of 2019 expanding its tests across the city and working on the less technical aspects of running such a service, from charging its electric cars to working with regulators to soothing a public that may be wary of robots roaming the roads.
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