Australian Army developing autonomous technology for convoy system

A new system being developed for the Army could result in driverless vehicles – albeit military, not civilian ones – on our roads.

The Australian Army has commenced development on new autonomous driving technology for use on its vehicles run in convoy.

The ‘leader-follower’ concept means a single driver could lead convoy a number of driverless vehicles, reducing the number of personnel required to transport supplies – and the number of people exposed to attack in conflict environments.

The Australian Road Research Board (ARRB) has partnered with the Institute for Intelligent Systems Research and Innovation (IISRI) at Melbourne’s Deakin University on the project, with hopes to create a “platform agnostic” prototype which can be retrofitted to any car or truck in the ADF’s fleet.

Early testing of the system has already begun at the Royal Australian Air Force Base Point Cook in Melbourne’s west, with MAN trucks being driven remotely to test the effectiveness of the vehicle controls.

The project is now focused on developing the autonomous systems required to drive on public roads.

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