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Intelligent Transportation Systems

steverstever Posts: 52,572
Intelligent Transportation Systems provide information to the driver about the surroundings. One VERY STRONG application benefits older drivers-who typically have trouble with the stop or go decision with green/yellow lights-this can provide guidance on the duration of the light and if they should go or stop.

No computers driving the car for you, no lack of personal responsibility, just a little guidance to help make driving safer and easier. (thanks Lilengineerboy).


  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    "21,000 of the 43,000 deaths annually on America's highways are caused by roadway departure and intersection related incidents.... To save lives and prevent injuries on roadways, communication between vehicles and between vehicles and the roadside are required. Such advanced, wireless communication is supported by Dedicated Short Range Communications (DSRC), a tool approved for licensing by the FCC in 2003."

    Vehicle Infrastructure Integration
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    ITS is Intelligent Transportation Systems, kind of a buzzword that preceded VII (Vehicle Infrastructure Integration). I think the most visible ITS example is the "vehicle platoon" in the late 90s on I-15 near San Diego.
    I found a blurb on the net: Smart Highways

    This is still pretty pie in the sky stuff, right now I think applications are more along the lines of:
    Vehicle Integration Hits the Road
  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,458
    When I was at Virgina Tech they made some kind of smart highway system as a test bed near by.

    I will have to try and find the old articles on it.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    I can post them. They certainly did, when I was in graduate school a lot of work was being done at VT.

    The capabilities of that facility are amazing. They can control weather on that road and perform all kinds of real, on the road driving studies in an incredibly controlled setting. I have to use the simulator to do what they can do.

    VT Smart Road
  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,458
    Yup that is it my apartment senior year was only about a mile from the entrance to the road and the control center for it.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    It seems as if we are going to get more ITS vehicles. With things like fog penetrating radar. Automatic braking warning systems and even lane control systems being advertised it seems that sooner or later these things will become standard as safety features. ABS was developed because the average driver couldn't learn to modulate their own breaks to avoid locking the wheels up. Skid control is going to become a mandated addition to all cars after 2010. It is all about safety either with Air bags after the accident or warning devices before we simply will have to get used to the idea that there are too many drivers in the world and sooner or later they are going to have an accident. People aren't willing to learn how to drive better maybe the only answer left is to assist them with technology.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    Most ITS systems are currently centered around providing information to the driver rather than making decisions for them. In the future, things like the car platooning may happen (if they can get around the legal challenges) as a way to compensate for the lack of public transportation in this country.
    Most of the systems you mentioned are still designed to augment the driver's requests. Adaptive cruise control can brake if another car cuts in to allow the set following distance. There is a limit to how hard it can bake. Current forward collision warning systems just tell the drive to look up and brake, but don't grab their head and aim their eyes out the windscreen while forcing one's foot on the brake.
    Brake assist is because it was found that most people don't hit the brakes hard enough initially in a panic stop (this might be because they don't want to get creamed by the cell-phone chatting soccer mom in the Escalade behind them but thats neither here nor there).
    Lane-departure warning systems such as the one on the Infiniti is having trouble gaining customer acceptance because it will alarm if you change lanes without signaling. That means, people don't like it because they are too lazy to signal. It is kind of like the seatbelt buzzers in cars, if you put on your seatbelt before turning the car on, there is no buzzer.

    People aren't willing to learn how to drive better maybe the only answer left is to assist them with technology.

    While I think its important for drivers to learn to drive, I think there needs to be an educational system in place to support that which is lacking in the US, and since 16 year olds are minors, I think there is lot of parental responsibility in there too; I am surprised we don't have more lawsuits against parents of teens who maim or injure others doing stupid stuff.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    All you say may have a ring of truth. We live in a culture that is much different than anyone elses however. We have more lawyers per capita than just about anywhere and the American solution has traditionally been to protect the consumer from themselves, like putting a warning on coffee sold at Micky Ds saying hot. I am not saying the future holds cars that drive themselves, although I don't discount the idea. I am simply saying things like Skid control and other systems designed to aid the driver will become more common.

    Do you see the possibility that cars will soon be designed to apply the brakes if you get too close to the car in front of you at highway speeds?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    car platooning

    Are you talking about physically connecting some cars or using some automated gizmo to keep them tracking together?

    New concept for me.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    Car Platooning

    Sorry its a pdf, this was initially done in '97 so I can't find any live websites about it. That example is a pretty unified system with communication between vehicles and infrastructure. There is communication between the vehicle and the road and between the vehicles. The vehicles track using magnets in the road (this same research lab did another project using magnets to guide snow plows over I-80 by Lake Tahoe).
    More contemporary systems use radar from adaptive cruise control systems. In theory, having a bunch of cars with adaptive cruise control should produce the same "platooning" with respect to vehicle spacing, although steering control is still required.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Interesting - the view must be better from the lead dog's position but the first car's gas mileage won't be near as good as the rest of the drivers.
  • I stumbled across your post on ITS ans had a question on the same and would really appreciate it if I can get reply from you all. Is there any commercially available or already deployed road-side to on-board(mobile unit or a receiver inside a communication devices or systems.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    I don't know of anything I would call "commercially available" yet, most things are still in experimental stages or very low volume in small areas. The back end equipment should be around, although you might have to google a bit for it.
  • nwngnwng Posts: 664
    that's what toyota has been showing in various car shows with their "pod" concept. I think it's doable with our existing technology but depends on if people want real time and precise gps tracking in their cars.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    The DSRC stuff doesn't require any GPS, its just a broadcast signal. Even that doesn't require GPS. The V2V communication stuff is valid, although the implementation of showing the driver's mood to others is a bit silly (wearing your heart on your fender?).
    Current systems try to count flow rate but in the future they could track a particular receiver to see how fast its going to get a more direct measure of speed of traffic.
  • nwngnwng Posts: 664
    but do you think a gps system would work better in terms of controlling traffic flow cause it's two ways? I know very little in this subject so this just came out of my head.
  • but do you think a gps system would work better in terms of controlling traffic flow cause it's two ways? I know very little in this subject so this just came out of my head.

    Those radio communications are two ways also. I think there are similar issues wrt privacy concerns...the transmitter has to identify itself so it can be tracked without providing any information about the vehicle in which the sensor is placed. No one wants to get a speeding ticket in the mail because some IVS application noticed they got from one sensor to another too quickly.
    I do think 2 way communication is key, you can monitor traffic flow and automate the timing of traffic signals and the like. You can also provide real time traffic information.
    I feel the tool being used (GPS, DSRC, flashlights, whatever) isn't so important as defining the interaction with the infrastructure and effect that will produce.
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