C7 Corvette Will Help Develop Future Technology for Disabled

SAM Project in text

The 2014 Corvette is revving up to add a major contribution to modern technology. Later this month, the C7 will take on the role of a semi-autonomous vehicle when former racecar driver, Sam Schmidt, a quadriplegic, takes the helm at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to test technology aimed at assisting people with disabilities, according to a Yahoo report.

Schmidt, who raced in the IndyCar series for three years, was injured in a crash during the off-season in the year 2000. The accident cut his spinal cord and left him paralyzed from the chest down.

Schmidt, however, never lost his passion for racing and continued to be involved in the sport, owning and managing a number of Indy-related teams.

Now, he’s preparing to tackle a new challenge as the driver of the semi-autonomous C7, called the SAM Project.

SAM Project tech

The technology for the car was built by Arrow Electronics and a few other companies, using the same kind of systems used for self-driving cars. The features include integrated software controls, GPS sensors and special steering inputs.

Schmidt will control his braking using a bite sensor and a hat with four infrared cameras mounted on it for steering and acceleration.

The high-tech C7 will also feature a number of safety features such as a GPS bumper that will keep the car 1.5 meters from the edge of the track and a system that will allow engineers to take complete control of the car remotely if need be.

Hats off to Schmidt and all involved for bringing this monumental project to life.