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Samsung creates "transparent" truck

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Samsung's prototype "Safety Truck" offers view of the road ahead
Samsung's prototype "Safety Truck" offers view of the road ahead
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Samsung's prototype "Safety Truck" offers view of the road ahead
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Samsung's prototype "Safety Truck" offers view of the road ahead

When driving behind big semi-trailers, people regularly take risks overtaking them because they often have to first move out from behind the truck to see if the road ahead is clear before passing. This is particularly dangerous on single-lane highways because such a maneuver can mean driving into the path of oncoming traffic. Now Samsung Electronics has come up with a way to help reduce this problem by mounting cameras on the front of a truck and large screens on the rear to display to following drivers a clear view of the road ahead.

Like the See-Through System we wrote about in 2013, the prototype video system on "Safety Truck" comprises a front-mounted camera to capture view of the road ahead of the truck. Rather than wirelessly send a live feed to a transparent LCD screen installed in a trailing driver's car, Samsung's solution transmits a continuous view of the road in front of the truck to exterior monitors mounted on the rear.

This view is enabled both day and night, and is said to have the potential to significantly reduce overtaking accidents, as well as providing trailing drivers with information on road hazards ahead well in time for them to react.

After extensive tests of the prototype in Argentina, Samsung says that the test vehicle is no longer operational but believes that the the technology has been proven to work. As such, there are plans to carry out further tests that will have the technology comply with the appropriate road authorities for use on the highways. In this regard, Samsung is working with NGOs and government to see this through.

No announcement has been made as to when – or if – such a system will be made commercially available or at what cost.

The short video below shows the system in use on the highway.

Source: Samsung

Samsung Argentina - Samsung Safety Truck (English Version)

17 comments
DLK811
Some one is a Genius!! So much more opportunities for safer more enjyable driving with this technology. Needed at blind corners etc.
blackhawkrider
Not a bad idea. I just hope it won't be too distracting for the drivers behind them. Just imagine, going down the road and see a truck with a huge monitor hanging on it. Would you be like, "oh...how convinient?" or will you be more like, "omg....there is a tv hanging on the truck!"
Michael Z. Williamson
I see a liability issue if someone doesn't, or claims not to have, seen an oncoming vehicle despite this.
Techtwit
Brilliant idea, a useful application of technology. Hope they address auto control of the brightness of the display, otherwise at night drivers could pull out to overtake and find their night vision is at zero!!!! How long before some thrusting young exec. starts selling the space for advertising?
Don Duncan
I hate to share the road with trucks. It's unsafe, inconvenient, and I have missed my offramp because they blocked the view. Without a govt. monopoly on the highway system I believe some expressways would be dedicated to commercial vehicles, some private vehicles.
That said, Samsung could provide a much needed product to save lives. A "heads up" display complete with the speed/distance of an oncoming vehicle, and a realistic recommendation of needed passing speed to avoid a collision would take out the guess work.
Gdk224
Until it lags and someone gets hit head on. Or someone is too busy watching the screen and rear-end the tractor and trailer.
Bob Flint
Needs to operate at all temperatures and the rear spray off the wet roadway onto the back of the truck would cover the monitors in seconds., if not obliterating the view, as so with the font mounted camera from the previous vehicle. Lots more to consider before parading an idea around as viable.
Milton
@Don Duncan
Aside from the rear bumpers that decapitate you if you rear-end 'em, I don't have any issues with sharing the road with semis.
In my experience, truck drivers are careful to make their lane-changes and very predictable on the road. (likely because their career is KAPUT if otherwise). Once they automate trucks and fix their rear bumpers, I think trucks on the road would actually make the roads safer.
Noel K Frothingham
Don Duncan, one step at a time. Sometimes people forget
Bob Flint, keeping the monitor clean is no mystery. We've done it for years now. The placement of the trailers back doors in relation to the sidewalls is the key. We've all seen car drivers who are attempting to find the sweet spot within the turbulence where there is virtually no buffeting and the car is literally riding the trucks 'draft'. The cars windshield remains relatively clean. Let the aerodynamic forces do the grunt work. You might be surprised how clean the trailer doors remain even in the hardest rain. Keeping the screen clean is the most basic and least important issue here. There are essentially two door systems currently in use - center latching and roller-style. Roller-style takes a solid panel that is cut into slats and then be reliably reassembled into what will appear to be a single, solid slab.?
MarkF
Nice idea in theory except for a few little drawbacks.
1) No owner operator or very few businesses will pay for something that doesn't benefit them. If it doesn't save or make money for them it doesn't make sense.
2) How many people will focus on the screen and not on the road if they're behind a truck. Looking in the wrong direction can get them killed just as much as a head on.
3) The trucks that come in from out west at work have been driving sometimes for days and you can't even read the long vehicle signs on the back because of the red dirt all over them. Trying to look at a super size monitor covered in bulldust won't be very effective.
Otherwise a cutsey little idea for countries with no dirt roads and nice clean highways.