Autonomous POD Platooning
Project Synergy aims to accelerate the deployment of the platooning technology for road transport in the UK. Platooning has the potential to increase the efficiency of road use, improve safety outcomes and improve the environmental performance of vehicles.
Westfield Pods Operating in a Platoon Formation
Platooning refers to two or more vehicles, in this case Westfield’s Autonomous PODs, following each other in a controlled formation.
Developments in high-speed inter-pod data connectivity and use of advanced sensor technologies will play a major role in making platooning a reality.
- Platooning results in a lower fuel consumption or increased range for electric vehicles, as vehicles drive closer together at a constant speed, with less braking and accelerating.
- Potential to reduce CO2 emissions by up to 10%.
- The critical risk factor in conventional vehicles is driver reaction time (or thinking time) and concentration. Research has shown 90% of all traffic accidents are due to human error.
Platooning helps improve safety. With connected driving, braking is automatic with virtually zero reaction time compared to human breaking.
- Platooning facilitates for more predictive driving of vehicles on the road, platooning also improves safety for other road users.
- Platooning optimises transport by using roads more effectively, helping transport people and goods faster and reducing traffic congestion. Thereby enabling the supply chain and transport system to be optimised.
- Platooning reduces congestion by improving traffic flows and reducing tailbacks.
- Platoons have the potential to make the logistic process more efficient and optimise the labour market.
- Platooning is a cost-saver, as lower fuel consumption means lower fuel costs, which currently make up 30% of total operating costs of all vehicles
- For freight and public transport platooning means also a safer and more efficient flow of their freight and people mobility.