Apple has published a patent, named "Peloton", with the United States Patent and Trademark Office for a self-driving vehicle system whereby a number of autonomous vehicles travel closely on the road together in a convoy, saving both cost and time.
"The system proposed by Apple is similar to those employed by cyclists in a race, where a team could arrange for an initial pair of riders to lead the group, disrupting the airflow and minimizing drag for those behind," noted AppleInsider.
"Further back riders can conserve energy as they don't have to fight against the wind. At specific times, the riders at the back of the line move to the front, giving the previous leading riders a rest," it added.
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This way, the vehicles toward the back of the convoy would use less fuel while still maintaining speed or would be able to reduce their fuel usage while maintaining speed.
The "Peloton" is part of Apple's rumored "Project Titan", a range of self-driving vehicle and self-driving vehicle systems. It is currently testing its autonomous cars in California and veteran analyst Ming-Chi Kuo stated back in August that he expects the Apple car will be launched in 2023.
The competition for the autonomous vehicle industry is already fierce, with the likes of Tesla, Uber and Mercedes also working on their own self-driving fleets. The "Peloton" seems to be part of Apple's plan to offer a more innovative solution to stand out in the busy autonomous vehicle market.