The US space agency and the automaker Nissan are joining hands to develop a self-driving, zero emission autonomous cars for earth and eventually to space with a five-year partnership.
Nissan and NASA will test autonomous cars at the US space agency’s Ames ResearchCentre in Sunnyvale, California.
NASA researchers will be working with Nissan’s research unit in Silicon Valley, they said in a joint statement.
Nissan is already testing cars that can navigate urban environments on their own, Wired.com reported.
The effort can develop technology that will be put to use in passenger vehicles here on Earth and rovers on planets.
“This is a perfect blend of the capability of what the robotics folks at NASA Ames have and the autonomy that we bring,” Maarten Sierhuis, director of Nissan’s Silicon Valley research centre was quoted as saying.
“The partnership brings together the best and brightest of NASA and Nissan and validates our investments in Silicon Valley,” added Nissan Chief Executive Carlos Ghosn. He said, “When we talk about autonomous drive, we’re transforming the relationship between the driver and the car from a master to slave, to a kind of partner.”
He said, “It’s a fundamental change that drivers must get used to, and a good human machine interface will be key to making that happen.”
They plan to have an actual car on the road by the end of 2015. (IANS)