Transportation systems and their efficiency or inefficiency have a significant impact on society. This is why efforts from engineering experts are always focused heavily on improving these systems.
We are now in a time of unprecedented advancements in transport technology. These forays are truly something to be excited about. With the transportation services market tapped to reach $7.8 Trillion by 2027, safe, affordable, and efficient transportation is now a goal for companies across the globe.
A few of these technologies have been placed ahead of the pack. We put together a list of 6 transport technology advancements to get excited about.
Autonomous vehicles are also known as driverless vehicles. They make use of fully automated driving systems to navigate efficiently through external environments.
Various levels of Advanced Driving Systems (ADS) have been introduced so far. Level 1 systems simply assist the driver with a few driving functions, while systems that go up to level 5, take full driving controls without needing a human driver.
More people are getting comfortable with assisted driving systems, which is a positive because autonomous vehicles account for safer road travel.
Drone technology is advancing fast and drones are being adopted in more industries every year. Innovation into aircraft pilot aircraft, as they’re also known, is changing the way companies render services.
This is more noteworthy in the commercial market. The drone services market size expected to reach $63 billion by 2025. More companies are looking to use drones to help render services, such as delivery, aerial shooting, and geographic mapping, faster and more efficiently.
In the future, we may begin to see intelligent model drones with full airspace awareness, advanced enough to fly autonomously.
The Internet of Things
The Internet of Things assumes that all people and items can be connected through networks. These vast connected networks could potentially influence many aspects of our daily driving:
The internet of Things describes a network of physical objects connected through systems and software over the internet. This has the potential to significantly improve transport systems across the globe. Seamless communication between sensors embedded inside these vehicles would now be possible.
Route planning would become even more advanced because sensors in any given vehicle could inform the driver on the best routes to take. This information would be specific to cars, motorcycles and other vehicles.
Sensors in vehicles could also help prevent accidents, as they would communicate with each other when they come in close contact with each other. Then they could send messages to the driver, preventing collisions in the process.
Lithium-ion Batteries for Electric Vehicles
Electric vehicle manufacturers more often than not, now select lithium-ion batteries to power their vehicles. Adoption continues and the market continues to grow.
The market for electric vehicles has been experiencing a boom as more people and companies switched to eco-friendly options. The market for Li-ion battery cells in electric vehicles has been forecast to reach a worth of almost $70 billion.
This has resulted in major investments in improving the technology behind these battery units and how they integrate with different vehicles. We may soon start to see batteries that take only minutes to charge, and last for days on end. Electric vehicle users can look forward to having more efficient vehicles overall.
Hypersonic Air Travel
An aircraft that could fly faster than the speed of sound is something that no one even dreamt about a while ago. Now there have been so many significant advancements that suggest they could be a reality shortly.
Reaction engines, based in Oxfordshire, announced a few years ago that it had tested an engine cooling system that could support an aircraft flying at Mach 3.3. As of now, there is speculation as to what speed cooling systems are being tested now. An aircraft that operates at Mach 5 would make a trip from New York to London in two hours, as opposed to the usual seven or eight hours.
Cooling engines that could operate at these speeds have been one of the industry’s biggest problems. Advancements in research and technology reveal that we are closer to having one of these aircraft than ever.
The Maglev (Magnetic Levitation) transportation system is another one to be excited about. It is a train system that utilises two sets of magnets. One set to repel and propel the train upwards above the track. The other set is used to move the train ahead. The lack of friction is significant in its operation because this lets it move at an incredible speed.
The maglev technology sets this system apart from other train systems. Due to its levitation system, it can be more efficient than any other train system around. It can make for a smoother, quieter ride every time.
The Japan experimental maglev train L0 Series reached a speed of 603 km/h (375 mph) on a 42.8 km magnetic levitation track as far back as 2015. An overall speed that was far greater than The world record for a normal train, which is 574.8 km/h.
A look at the global transportation spectrum reveals a lot of promise. Companies and governments who recognise the vital role that transportation plays in society are not resting on their laurels, as they strive for more research and innovation.