Connected mobility and automated vehicles
The vehicle of the future is the Connected Car, a computer on wheels that communicates with other computers. The core of this intelligent vehicle is cooperative mobility whereby a combination of sensors, real-time control and communication networks enables cars to communicate with each other (car-to-car: C2C) and with their environment (car-to-infrastructure: C2I and infrastructure-to-car: I2C). Cooperative mobility is the basis for many new applications that improve safety, reduce traffic jams and pollution as well as boost personal comfort.
Smart cruise control
Connected Car technologies have been used in the industry for some time, as in the vehicles containing Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with which TU/e works. This modified form of cruise control allows the car to ‘see’ for itself whether it is getting too close to the car in front, in which case the car brakes. This driver support happens on the basis of measured and estimated time, distance and difference in speed with the vehicle in front. A sensor in the front bumper sends the data to the car.
Cooperative Adaptive Cruise Control (CACC) extends the existing technology with information that the car acquires via communication with other vehicles (not only the vehicle immediately in front). This information includes, for instance, the position, speed and acceleration of the vehicle, data that are transmitted remotely between vehicles and allow vehicles to anticipate the behavior of other vehicles. Braking, accelerating and merging can occur automatically on the basis of these data. Simulations reveal that CACC helps to improve both traffic safety and traffic flow.