If you’ve traveled through the brand new Terminal 5 at London’s Heathrow Airport this summer, you may have encountered transportation looking straight out of the future. Twenty-two driverless pod cars have been ferrying British Airways passengers between parking lots and the terminal for weeks now, wowing spectators in the process.
The electric-powered vehicles can travel up to 25 mph and do not require any special tracks or magnetic fields; they simply follow lines that can be utilized for optical navigation. The eco-friendly cars replaced two old diesel buses that previously drove in a fixed loop around the terminal.
Soon, the futuristic pod cars could be making their way to airports in the United States. According the system’s manufacturer, ULTRa PRT, the technology is currently under review at airports in California and New York.
The company is also confident the technology could be adapted and upgraded to replace parts of city transportation systems in the near future. There is already reported interest to do so from officials in several North American cities.
Source: Popular Science