A Cessna Grand Caravan 208B is reported to have made the first fully autonomous gate-to-gate flight, says Xwing of San Francisco. Xwing hopes to use the aircraft, equipped with human-operated software, for regional cargo flights.
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The field is narrowing for self-driving technology, writes Timothy Lee, with Waymo taking the lead while leaving room for other competitors. "Maybe driverless taxis, driverless vehicles and driverless trucks are three distinctive markets that will each be dominated by its own group of companies," Lee writes.
BMW announced plans to build electric vehicles with solid-state batteries, joining other automakers such as Volkswagen and Toyota in backing the technology. "By the end of the decade we will have an automotive-grade solid state battery for use in our car series," said BMW's Frank Weber.
Amazon has introduced an Alexa feature that gives commuters in seven cities real-time information about trains and buses. The smart assistant provides updates about late transportation as well as directions to and within terminals.
Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., showed support for user fees for transportation in a recent interview, suggesting that a user-pay approach is nothing new and that a vehicle miles traveled approach may be in the future. "For years, we have taken a user-pay approach," Carper said, noting "If you use roads, highways, bridges, you have to help pay for that. I think that's sound policy and one that we should continue."
Gas-fueled light vehicles of the model year 2030 or later will be banned in Washington state under a bill passed by lawmakers. The prohibition would also apply to vehicles purchased elsewhere and imported to the state.