The next generation traffic management technology has been launched that will enable vehicles to communicate with overhead gantries carrying road signs over motorways and trunk roads.
The data from passing vehicles will be collected, while the passing vehicles will also receive traffic information, which will then be processed by on-board driver assistance systems.
For transmitting data over short distances the wireless WLAN standard will be used.
The idea is to provide motorists with clear and standardized information on the gantry displays and on their sat-nav screens.
Another promising project uses data gathered from the road network, which will be merged with data collected from vehicles in order to produce a clear picture of the traffic situation.
These so-called “floating car data” make it possible to introduce services that no current navigation device can offer – such as localized warnings of road-works, accidents or cars driving in the wrong direction, not to mention advance notice of adverse weather conditions such as unexpected black ice.
All this requires a technological architecture that is capable of analyzing data from a range of different sources, weighting it appropriately and transmitting it over the mobile phone network – across national frontiers.
Eventually, the technology will be used to produce cars that drive themselves.
Indeed, such vehicles are already on test by several manufacturers.