Samsung prototype system let you see in front of trucks on the highway.

This System Lets You See in Front of That Enormous Semi on the Highway

This System Lets You See in Front of That Enormous Semi on the Highway

Future Tense
The Citizen's Guide to the Future
June 23 2015 5:48 PM

This System Lets You See in Front of That Enormous Semi on the Highway

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A truck passes under an 'ecotax' control portal on November 4, 2013 in Plelan-le-Grand, western France, on the motorway between Lorient and Rennes.

Photo by DAMIEN MEYER/AFP/Getty Images

Few things make the open road seem less so than a looming semi truck. When you find yourself behind one, the world ahead disappears. With it goes any sense of road conditions, sometimes making passing dangerous and other hazards difficult to anticipate. That's my sense, at any rate, having only ever been in the passenger seat while on the highway. What I know for sure is that in the United States alone, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has recorded tens of thousands of truck-related crashes a year, many of them fatal.

Now, Samsung thinks it has engineered a partial solution, finding a way to turn large trucks into a resource for other drivers rather than a liability to them. According to a post on the company’s official blog, its researchers developed a system in which a wireless camera on the nose of a truck feeds video to an array of four large screens on the rear of the trailer. With its wide field of view, this video stream can provide drivers behind the truck with information about oncoming traffic and other conditions on the road ahead.

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Samsung explains that it tested a prototype of this system in Argentina. While that experiment has been discontinued, the company plans to carry out further tests in order to ensure that its technology complies with “existing national protocols” and other standards. The blog post offers no indication as to when Samsung expects to take the next steps. In the meantime, it has released an exciting video of that demonstrates how today’s technology might make tomorrow’s roads a little safer.

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