Eric Unnervik, a microengineer at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in France shows off his latest creation. This prototype of a miniature two-wheeler can travel upto 65 kmph and Unnervik hopes to see this develop into a full sized autonomous motorcycle sometime in the future.
The prototype was a part of his Master’s project and was developed at the Automatic Control Laboratory run by Professor Colin Jones.
The miniature riderless motorcycle is fitted with a credit card sized computer called Raspberry Pi and sensors that measure angle and speed of travel. Attempting to outperform human riders, the miniature riderless motorcycle is controlled by the operator but can maintain its upright position without any assistance. Even though this miniature motorcycle resembles a child’s toy as on date, Unnervik has plans to see this develop into a full grown riderless motorcycle in due course.
A Wi-Fi chip fitted to the motorcycle enables the operator to start the computer via a smartphone while its direction and handling is managed via a remote control device. The computer steps in to make adjustments so as to keep the bike in an upright position at all times. Speed is maintained and steering angle utilized which is controlled by a servomotor.
While this miniature riderless motorcycle has caused some enthusiasm for its maker, a riderless motorcycle in the future holds little excitement for biking aficionados. Yamaha had shown us a robot which could ride a motorcycle at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show. Yamaha has claimed that their robot, when ready, will be able to ride a motorcycle much faster than humans.
Seeing such innovations, one question comes to mind. Will motorsport as we know it, manage to survive in the future?