Posts Tagged ‘Google’

Nevada DMV Issues First Autonomous Vehicle License To Google

By Sean Whaley | 11:23 am May 7th, 2012

CARSON CITY – The Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles has approved Google’s license application to test autonomous vehicles on Nevada public roads.

It is the first license issued in the United States under new laws and regulations that put Nevada at the forefront of autonomous vehicle development.

After drive testing demonstrations along freeways, state highways and neighborhoods both in Carson City and the busy Las Vegas Strip, the department’s Autonomous Review Committee met to review Google’s safety plans, employee training, system functions and accident reporting mechanisms.

The committee approved the application and is now creating the state’s first autonomous testing business license and license plates for the international company.  The license plates displayed on the test vehicle will have a red background and feature an infinity symbol on the left side.

“I felt using the infinity symbol was the best way to represent the ‘car of the future,’ ” said department Director Bruce Breslow. “The unique red plate will be easily recognized by the public and law enforcement and will be used only for licensed autonomous test vehicles. When there comes a time that vehicle manufactures market autonomous vehicles to the public, that infinity symbol will appear on a green license plate.”

Google's self-driving car navigates the Strip. / Photo courtesy of Nevada DMV.

Google was the first company to file an application with the department to test their autonomous system. Other auto manufacturers have indicated their desire to test and develop autonomous technology in Nevada in the future.

Brian Sandoval became the first governor in the nation to be “taken for a ride” in Google’s self-driving car during a demonstration in July 2011.

Sandoval went for a ride in the modified Toyota Prius from the capital city halfway through the Washoe Valley before returning to the Department of Motor Vehicles office where the car and a duplicate were on display.

“It’s incredibly impressive,” Sandoval said at the time. “It accounts for all the safety issues. You have the ability to know who is front of you. You have a 360-degree consideration of everything around you. It even tells you when a crosswalk is coming up.”

 

 

Nevada Lawmakers Approve Regulations For First In Nation Self-Driving Vehicles

By Nevada News Bureau Staff | 1:30 pm February 15th, 2012

CARSON CITY – Nevada took a bold step forward today as lawmakers approved regulations allowing for the operation of self-driving vehicles on the state’s roadways.

The first in the nation regulations were approved by the Legislative Commission, and could provide for economic development opportunities in Nevada.

“Nevada is the first state to embrace what is surely the future of automobiles,” Department of Motor Vehicles Director Bruce Breslow said. “These regulations establish requirements companies must meet to test their vehicles on Nevada’s public roadways as well as requirements for residents to legally operate them in the future.”

In creating the regulations, the department partnered with Google, automobile manufacturers, testing professionals, insurance companies, universities and law enforcement all with a common vision of saving lives. Several other states currently have bills in front of their legislators that will follow Nevada into the future.

Google has developed a self-driving car and gave Gov. Brian Sandoval and other state officials rides in one of their vehicles in the capital in July, 2011.

Nevada became the first state in the nation to legalize the use of driverless vehicles with legislation passed this past session.

Gov. Brian Sandoval was the first governor in the nation to go for a ride in Google's autonomous car in July, 2011. / Nevada News Bureau file photo.

“Our work doesn’t stop here,” Breslow said. “The department is currently developing licensing procedures for companies that want to test their self-driving vehicles in Nevada. Nevada is proud to be the first state to embrace this emergent technology and the department looks forward to sustaining partnerships as the technology evolves.”

Breslow said self-driving vehicles will be distinguished as “autonomous test vehicles” by the red license plates they will display. When the technology is ready for general public use, a green license plate will be displayed on vehicles registered with autonomous technology.

Sandoval went for a ride in Google’s modified Toyota Prius from the capital city halfway through the Washoe Valley before returning to the Department of Motor Vehicles office where the car and a duplicate were on display.

“It’s incredibly impressive,” Sandoval said after the trip. “It accounts for all the safety issues. You have the ability to know who is front of you. You have a 360-degree consideration of everything around you. It even tells you when a crosswalk is coming up.”

Gov. Sandoval ‘Taken For Ride’ In Google Self-Driving Car

By Sean Whaley | 1:48 pm July 20th, 2011

CARSON CITY – Brian Sandoval became the first governor in the nation to be “taken for a ride” in Google’s self-driving car.

Sandoval went for a ride in the modified Toyota Prius from the capital city halfway through the Washoe Valley before returning to the Department of Motor Vehicles office where the car and a duplicate were on display.

“It’s incredibly impressive,” Sandoval said. “It accounts for all the safety issues. You have the ability to know who is front of you. You have a 360-degree consideration of everything around you. It even tells you when a crosswalk is coming up.”

Gov. Brian Sandoval today became the first governor in the nation to go for a ride in Google's autonomous car. / Photo: Sean Whaley, Nevada News Bureau

Sandoval actually drove the vehicle himself from the freeway to the DMV office for safety reasons, even though it can navigate city streets as well as freeways. But the freeway drive was accomplished entirely by the vehicle using its various sensor technologies.

The driverless car technology is likely less than 10 years away, at least for freeway driving.

Nevada became the first state in the nation to legalize the use of driverless vehicles with legislation passed this past session. The DMV will now move forward with regulations by early next year to implement the law.

“Nevada is the first state in the country that is going to be (adopting) regulations for this vehicle,” Sandoval said. “I think it is important for Nevada to be first on this. This is going to be part of the future and Nevada has always been a very progressive state.”

Sandoval said he did not “text” on the trip, although it is legal to text in an autonomous vehicle. Nevada on Oct. 1 will prohibit texting or the use of hand-held cell phones while driving.

The Prius has 68,000 miles and has never been in an accident.

Sandoval said he did take the opportunity on the drive to talk with Google executives about looking to Nevada as the technology becomes a reality.

“If there is an opportunity to manufacture these vehicles in the state we certainly want to be a player in that,” he said.

Tom Jacobs, public information officer for the Nevada DMV, also went for a drive in the car to the Washoe Valley. He said the car went at 65 mph through the valley. The car will not cut off another driver, run a light or speed, Jacobs said.

The technology requires that the car be driven on a specified route before it can they take over operation of the controls, he said.

Audio clips:

Gov. Brian Sandoval says the Google auto-car even knows when it approaches a crosswalk:

072011Sandoval1 :16 crosswalk coming up.”

Sandoval says Nevada is the first state to legalize the use of the vehicles:

072011Sandoval2 :23 very progressive state.”

Sandoval says he would like Nevada to be involved in the production of the vehicles:

072011Sandoval3 :07 player in that.”