Pothole Detection Technology Expands

Ford is now offering Continuous Controlled Damping (CCD), its pothole-detection (and avoidance, which is the point) technology on midsize cars, which is a great step forward here in Michigan, believe me.

The car's computer detects when the car is running over a pothole, then instantly adjusts the shock absorbers to keep the tire from dropping into the depression. It works so well that Ford can demonstrate how the car can roll over a pothole without crushing ping-pong balls that had been dropped into it. The pothole protection feature will come standard on the car, says Ford spokesman Aaron Miller.

“The new Fusion V-6 Sport substantially reduces the harsh impact potholes often deliver,” says Jason Michener, a Ford engineer with expertise in the technology, in a statement. “Our new pothole-mitigation technology works by actually detecting potholes and catching the car’s wheel before it has a chance to drop all the way into the pothole.”

Ford cites AAA as saying pothole damage costs $3 billion a year, up to $300 a car.

The system works through the use of 12 high-resolution sensors. The computer can adjust suspension dampers every two milliseconds. It starts operating as soon as the car encounters the lip of a pothole — faster than the blink of an eye — making the shock absorber stiffen so that the front wheel won't fall into the hole.


(Ford pothole-detection and avoidance)

Although a bit different in implementation, it offers something similar to the smartwheels from Neal Stephenson's 1992 novel Snow Crash.

On the end is a squat foot, rubber tread on the bottom, swiveling on a ball joint. As the wheel rolls, the feet plant themselves one at a time, almost glomming into one continuous tire. If you surf over a bump, the spokes contract to roll over it...
(Read more about smartwheels)

Even closer, consider that Arthur C. Clarke created a solution called "flex-wheels" in his 1968 novel 2001: A Space Odyssey:

Most of them moved on balloon tires, for this smooth, level plain posed no transportation difficulties; but one tanker rolled on the peculiar flex-wheels which had proved one of the best all-purpose ways of getting around on the Moon. A series of flat plates arranged in a circle, each plate independently mounted and sprung, the flex-wheel had many of the advantages of the caterpillar track from which it had evolved. It would adapt its shape and diameter to the terrain over which it was moving, and, unlike a caterpillar track, would continue to function even if a few sections were missing.

Via USA Today.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 2/9/2016)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Vehicle ")

Elon Musk Seeks To Create 1941 Heinlein Speedster
'The car surged and lifted, clearing its top by a negligible margin.' - Robert Heinlein, 1941.

Have I Seen The Tesla Roadster Story Before?
'Only it wasn't a vessel. It was an automobile...' - Theodore Sturgeon, 1941.

Self-Driving Car Ticketed
This just missed making my day.

Loomo Mini Transporter Robot Companion You Ride On
'Slowly the [robot] horse raised its head, wiggled its ears, blinked twice, gave a tentative whinny.' - Christopher Stasheff, 1969.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Ontario Starts Guaranteed Minimum Income
'Earned by just being born.'

Is There Life In Outer Space? Will We Recognize It?
'The antennae of the Life Detector atop the OP swept back and forth...'

Space Traumapod For Surgery In Spacecraft
' It was a ... coffin, form-fitted to Nessus himself...'

Tesla Augmented Reality Hypercard
'The hypercard is an avatar of sorts.'

A Space Ship On My Back
''Darn clever, these suits,' he murmured.'

Biomind AI Doctor Mops Floor With Human Doctors
'My aim was just not to lose by too much.' - Human Physician participant.

Fuli Bad Dog Robot Is 'Auspicious Raccoon Dog' Bot
Bad dog, Fuli. Bad dog.

Las Vegas Humans Ready To Strike Over Robots
'A worker replaced by a nubot... had to be compensated.'

You'll Regrow That Limb, One Day
'... forcing the energy transfer which allowed him to regrow his lost fingers.'

Elon Musk Seeks To Create 1941 Heinlein Speedster
'The car surged and lifted, clearing its top by a negligible margin.'

Somnox Sleep Robot - Your Sleepytime Cuddlebot
Science fiction authors are serious about sleep, too.

Real-Life Macau or Ghost In The Shell
Art imitates life imitates art.

Has Climate Change Already Been Solved By Aliens?
'I had explained," said Nessus, "that our civilisation was dying in its own waste heat.'

First 3D Printed Human Corneas From Stem Cells
Just what we need! Lots of spare parts.

VirtualHome: Teaching Robots To Do Chores Around The House
'Just what did I want Flexible Frank to do? - any work a human being does around a house.'

Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence (METI) Workshop
SF writers have thought about this since the 19th century.

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.