We know companies are already working on self-driving cars, but what about self-driving trains? As it turns out, over in Germany, rail operator Deutsche Bahn and Siemens have announced the world’s first automated, driverless train that will be operating in the city of Hamburg.
But wait, aren’t some trains already driverless? Yes, there are. In many cities around the world, there are metro trains that are driverless. However, the main difference is that these trains operate on exclusive single tracks, meaning that these tracks only operate using self-driving trains and nothing else.
With Deutsche Bahn’s trains, they will be sharing the tracks with other regular, human-operated trains. The advantage to this is that according to Deutsche Bahn’s CEO Richard Lutz, not only are these trains going to be more energy efficient and punctual compared to regular trains, but because they share an existing train track, there is no need to spend money building new tracks just for it.
Siemens’ CEO Roland Busch adds that these driverless trains will be able to accommodate 30% more passengers as well, meaning that more people can fit on board which could potentially reduce the number of trips it would need to take. A human operator will still be present in the train to supervise the journey, but otherwise these trains are expected to drive themselves.