Publication

Autonomous Ground Systems (AGS)
2015

The Impact of Autonomy-Enabled Vehicles and System Controls on Non-Users in Semi-Controlled Environments

by Edward Straub

Abstract

Commercial OEMs are fast realizing the long awaited dream of self-driving trucks and cars. The technology continues to improve with major implications for the Army. In the near tear, the impact may be most profound for military installations. Many believe, however, that the major limiting factor to wide-spread automated vehicle usage will not be technology but the human element. What happens when humans through no choice of their own are compelled to interact with self-driving vehicles? We propose a mixed-methods research study that examines the complex transportation system from both a technical and social perspective. This study will inform environmental controls (rules of the road and infrastructure modifications) and increase understanding of the social dynamics involved with vehicle acceptance. Findings may pave the way for a reduction in the over $400M the Army spends annually on non-tactical vehicles and the technical improvements, grounded in dual-use use cases will be directly applicable to warfighting scenarios.