My crystal ball says, “hit the brakes!”.
Roadway safety technology like vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communications have come a long way in recent years. French firm UTAC CERAM Millbrook just launched a V2X system prioritising the safety of motorcyclists but they aren’t alone. Continental has partnered with Deutsche Telekom on a predictive collision alert system that could broaden the scope to include motorcyclists, cyclists, and even pedestrians.
The two companies previously collaborated on a cloud-based connected driving project in 2019. Now, Continental and Deutsche Telekom are applying those learnings to a new V2X network that encompasses all public roadway users. Utilising GPS, the system calculates the speed and trajectory of vehicles equipped with the technology. Users on foot, motorbikes, or bicycles will be able to track their movements with a dedicated smartphone app.
The Continental and Deutsche Telekom network will collect data from the device’s satellite positioning, accelerometers, mobile network, and the cloud. If the system determines that the speed and trajectory of two users will lead to a crash, it will alert both parties to the imminent danger. The alert system isn’t just a last-ditch effort to avoid a collision, either. The V2X network calculates the user’s route for the next five seconds, providing ample time for drivers to take evasive action.
“Especially vulnerable road users are often overlooked in road traffic,” stated Continental Head of Research and Development Karsten Michels. “Moreover, according to the European Road Safety Council, more than 80% of accidents between pedestrians and bicycles and cars are fatal to vulnerable road users. Real-time networks and collision alerts improve visibility for cyclists and pedestrians, thus reducing fatalities from serious accidents, injuries and road accidents.”
The two firms have already successfully tested the system on the road. They will continue developing the technology before presenting the results at the ITS World Congress in Hamburg, Germany in October, 2021.