Car technology is developing at an alarming rate, there seems to be a new invention every other week. Want Driving Lessons likes to keep ahead of the game and bring you news on just whats ht in the world of driving- this week it’s Booze-sensing steering wheels!
A freshly invented steering wheel that is able to monitor heart rates, breathing patterns as well as alcohol in the driver’s system! The ingenious idea went onto win a prestigious award for its designer. Known as the ‘Biometric’ steering wheel, it’s new age inventions like these that could be fitted in our cars very soon!
The Autocar-Courland Next Generation Award has been awarded to the super smart Coventry University graduate Nicole Agba and her steering wheel.
Officially it’s named the ‘Steer Right’ wheel and uses a ‘Smart Fabrics Interactive Textile’ which has lots of built in tiny sensors all around its surface. Each of these miniscule devices will monitor biological indicators like pulse, respiration rates and sweat through the skin surface of the hand. It’s from this information that the steering wheel will be able to indicate if the driver has a health problem, is angry, tired or nervous.
But here’s the clever bit- by measuring the chemicals emitted in sweat, the wheel would know whether the driver had too much alcohol and stop the car from moving completely. Although there’s nothing stopping offenders from wearing gloves to stop the wheel from detecting the chemicals, however, the system is designed to stop drivers from getting behind the wheel at those times they are not as sober as they feel they might be. For instance, after a night out- even a few drinks will be enough to become a problem.
Inventor Ms Agba has won a five-month work experience tour of the award’s sponsors; Jaguar Land Rover, McLaren Automotive, Peugeot, Skoda and Toyota, as well as a £7,500 cash prize.
At 23-years-old, the young inventor from Rainham, Kent said: “I’m ecstatic to have won! It’s such a unique experience; I’m so pleased to have had the opportunity to be a part of it. Not only am I thrilled to be the first female recipient of the award, I hope my success inspires others who might ever have been told they cannot do something to look at my example and not be afraid to chase their dreams. With hard work and dedication, you can achieve anything you set your mind to.”
But there was some stiff competition in the contest, Autocar editor-in-chief Steve Cropley, and part of the judging panel said: “Once again we have been bowled over by the calibre of the entries received for this year’s competition, making Nicole an all the more deserved winner.”
We can see the ‘Steer Right’ steering wheel becoming a staple part of cars in the future. It’s a unique way to ensure that people are staying within the boundaries of the law without having to get the police involved after an accident. Think of it as prevention rather than cure! It’s inventions such as these that could make driving a much safer way to get around.