Thanks to one man — Jack Henry Turner — Seisdon in Staffordshire became the unlikely centre for a successful, if somewhat short-lived, motor sport industry.
Born in Wales, Turner moved to the Old Smithy in Seisdon in the late 1940s where he looked after and tuned racing cars for a variety of wealthy owners. One of the most enthusiastic of these was John Webb, chairman of Stourbridge glassmaker Webb Corbett, who raced a ‘Turner’ (in fact a converted MG Magnette) for a number of years.
In 1953 Webb became a director of Turner Sports Cars Ltd. and the factory moved into Wolverhampton where larger premises had been found in which a new single-seater Formula 2 car could be designed and built. The car, which used a Lea Francis 1767cc engine, unfortunately suffered from poor reliability and it failed to finish in most of the races in which it took part.
Keep reading: Seisdon’s Motor Sport Heritage, Turner Sports Cars Ltd
Google Self-Driving Car
A lot of research is going into how autonomous (driverless) cars react to their environment. This includes being able to navigate roads, read street signs, and interpret traffic lights, even in bad lighting and inclement weather.
But that’s the easy part; unlike people, roadway infrastructure doesn’t really change much and is rather predictable. The difficulty comes from self-driving cars having to figuring out the nuances that human drivers take for granted, such as communicating with pedestrians on a busy city street.
Through subtle cues such as eye contact and hand signals, we can usually tell whether a person at a crosswalk has acknowledged that we’re heading their way in a two-ton moving hunk of metal. An experienced driver can decode a pedestrian’s intent through just body language
When you add in factors such as age (is it a teen or senior citizen crossing the street?), and time of day, or weather conditions (Does that person under an umbrella in a downpour even see me?), the decision process for self-driving cars gets infinitely more complicated.
Keep reading: How Can Driverless Cars Interact With Pedestrians?
LINA, the biodegradable car
A car made from biodegradable natural materials has passed road safety tests in the Netherlands.
Watch the short video on the BBC News Click website here. (Opens in new window)
TU Ecomotive, a student team from Eindhoven University of Technology, unveiled LINA earlier this year.
The four-seater’s lightweight structure is made from sugar beet and flax which takes 20% of the energy used to produce today’s aluminium or carbon-fibre based cars.
The university says the concept car will undergo a few final “adaptations” before being allowed on public roads later this month.
BBC Click’s Dan Simmons was the first person outside of the team who has been allowed to take it for a test drive.
Source: BBC News