Mercedes Vision AVTR Source:
Mercedes Vision AVTR Source:

The evolution of car technology

October 25, 2022

Over the years cars have been evolving, and technology is improving by the day. With electric cars, we could tackle many problems and hope for a cleaner future. 

Electric vehicles are the start of a new era, a big leap in the car industry. EV cars are slowly becoming a bigger thing. Tesla, a major car company that’s known for selling electric cars, is becoming more and more popular. Tesla, along with other car companies, are starting to make their own electric vehicles in hope of a cleaner future. 

Dr. Synder, an English teacher at the iSchool, states, “there’s going to be a push with electric cars… they are saying that all their brand new cars that are sold have to be electric. I think it’s pretty exciting. It’s not the answer to pollution or energy issues but it’s definitely a push in the right direction.” 

Mr. Mei, an English and learning specialist at the iSchool, also agrees with the idea of EV: “I always support anything that is better for the environment. I definitely support the use of electric cars.”

Along with the many technologies that have been developed and perfected, there is one that will make the driving experience change forever: the self-driving car. The Electric Future of Autonomous vehicles states that EV vehicles and technology might make the driving experience safer but not eco-friendly.  “The transition to electric power and the rise of autonomous vehicles. Self-driving cars may use more energy than people-driven cars to power sensors and computers for safe navigation.”

The interior for self-driving cars.

Self-driving cars are here today, but they are not at their full potential. Mr. Mei says that he’s a little nervous about it: “at the end of the day, I think someone should be in the car”  (Image link Self-driving cars are still relatively new, and there are still unknowns with artificial intelligence. 

Dr. Synder states a different opinion on this topic. He says, “I think cars are safer than ever even though there are still accidents that happen, fewer people are getting hurt, I hope that will continue in driverless cars because maybe they can create cars to protect passengers more.” There are mixed opinions on self-driving cars, it’s a new type of technology waiting to be perfected.

Electric cars have their disadvantages too. too. “Battery technology is the rare mineral that is needed to make batteries. It’s not as environmentally friendly so I think battery technology has a “long way to go,” says Dr. Synder. If EVs need batteries to drive the source for the battery may be hard to find and hard to obtain. This is a disadvantage that comes with EVs. If only batteries didn’t need such rare material it would be so much more efficient. 

Mr. Mei also states a disadvantage: I was talking to a friend before and brought up a good point that electric cars are more silent; it could pose a hazard or danger.” He suggests a solution to that problem, “They can use an artificial sound, incorporate artificial sound into the cars, and kind of mimic the engine sound.” That’s a good idea, especially for people who like the sound of the engine. 

Military technology is also improving. Imagine a wheel that can be configured in 2 sec to help it ride over terrain changes. Imagine no more because that actually exists. DARPA is the company that makes these wheels. Reinventing the Wheel for Vehicles of the Future states, RWBs can change from wheel to track in 2 seconds. While the vehicle is in motion wheels perform better on hard surfaces while tracks perform better on soft surfaces.” 

This technology is aimed at the military which needs maneuverable vehicles for when they are on important missions. 

“Putting a motor in the wheel offers many benefits for combat vehicles such as heightened acceleration and maneuverability with optimal torque traction, power, and speed over rough or smooth terrain. Kinetic has demonstrated a unique approach in incorporating three gear stages and a complex thermal management design into a system small enough to fit a standard military 20-inch rim.”  

It’s not only the rim that DARPA is changing, they are also changing the car suspension. They want the driving experience as comfortable as possible when going over bumps and terrain changes at a high speed. “Praten Miller’s multimode extreme travel suspension system aims to enable high-speed travel over rough terrain while keeping the vehicle upright and minimizing occupant discomfort. The vehicle demonstrator incorporates standard military 20-inch wheels and advanced short-travel suspension of 4 to 6 inches. And a high travel suspension that extends up to 6 feel, 42 inches upward, and 30 inches downward. The demonstration is to show off its ability to tackle steep slopes and grades by actively and independently adjusting the hydraulic suspension on each wheel of the vehicle.” This is really cool tech that could improve military combat vehicles. 

With new technology and more modern cars coming out there’s a lot to look forward to. 

Both Mr. Mei and Dr. Syndey are looking forward to the new designs that the modern cars will bring. Mr. Mei says “ I am looking forward to the designs.” “Maybe technology in the future will allow cars to levitate.”  That’s a cool concept. Dr. Syndey says “I think I am most excited about the designs.. .a lot of the designs currently are because of what gas-powered cars need, they need a lot of things and now they don’t need that stuff so it can take some liberties to design cars with different sizes and shapes.”

Car companies are coming up with really cool designs that will help cars be more aerodynamic and make the cars more compact and lighter. Cars are changing and evolving and technology are growing fastly in our world. It’s exciting to see what new technology and cars will bring in the future. 

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