Car to car communication is an idea that can be used to drastically improve driver safety, and some of this technology is already being implemented into today’s latest models. Cars can be updated with the latest road traffic or safety information, in order to avoid icy patches on the road or keep a safe distance from one another in a motorway pileup. Notifications could be given if an ambulance is approaching, so that cars can clear the road before the driver is even able to see or hear the emergency vehicle. There are multiple potential uses for talking car technology, which is why both government agencies and automakers alike are interested in its future.
Car technology – Latest Tests and Improvements
A recent conference was held at the University of Michigan in the United States to discuss the future of car to car communications. This Global Symposium on Connected Vehicles and Infrastructure highlighted the fact that recent US trials showed that the system could be entirely viable. In these trials, vehicles chosen for the test communicated with roadside devices throughout the town of Ann Arbor. The vehicles were capable of changing the traffic light if conditions were safe, or could alert the driver if the light was about to change.
Today’s car communication systems use sensors, cameras, and short range communication to transmit basic data. You may already be able to look at a car comparison to choose vehicles with advanced safety features and Bluetooth connectivity, but expect to see short range communication added to the list of basic features not too far in the distant future. This allows cars to track the location and speed of other vehicles on the road, spot pedestrians or animals, and share data with other vehicles.
Use of Australian Technology
The trial undertaken by the University of Michigan is just one example of many similar studies worldwide. The latest form of car to car communication was devised using technology developed by the University of South Australia’s Institute for Telecommunications Research. This system is the one being used both in Ann Arbor and in a similar German study. In Ann Arbor, over eight billion transmissions have been successfully sent between vehicles and roadside infrastructure to help track traffic and improve safety since the trial began.
The Future of Car to Car Communication
These early trials have been largely successful, but it could still be some time before the best SUV cars are able to talk to one another. One issue to contend with is the cost of these systems. Dr. Alexander from the University of South Australia believes that these costs would be quite low to implement, but if sensors must be used in existing traffic structures this could cost more. At the moment, new cars from manufacturers like Volvo are already coming equipped with basic communication systems in place. This will become more widespread as the results of current trials are analysed and the demand for safe, intelligent car design grows.