Samsung Transparent Truck - Technology to save lives
Korean electronics giant Samsung has been trialling technology that allows drivers to see through a truck they're stuck behind, allowing them to better judge when it's safe to overtake.
The Samsung Safety Truck isn't actually transparent but it does give that illusion. Basically, a built-in wireless camera takes a live view from the front of the truck and streams it to four monitors arranged together across the exterior of the truck's rear doors. Vehicles following behind the truck can therefore see what is in front of it in real time.
The system can even work at night, when a special infrared vision-adaptive camera combines with the truck's lights to light up the road ahead for following traffic.
The system was initially developed by the company in Argentina. A video released of the so-called transparent truck claims that almost one person dies from a road traffic accident in the country every hour. 80% of these accidents are caused by vehicles trying to overtake. Overtaking can be particularly dangerous in countries like Argentina that have a predominance of single lane roads and the Samsung truck is designed to help make blind overtaking a thing of the past.
The prototype featured in the video, mounted on a branded Samsung articulated truck, is no longer being used but the company say the trials were successful.
Described by Samsung as an idea that instead of changing people's lives, saves them, the safety truck will gradually be trialled in other countries as and when Samsung can secure the necessary approvals and permits from governments all around the world. There is no timescale on when and if the system will be rolled out but it could soon see use on commercial traffic in countries like Argentina where it has successfully trialled.