Collaborative Mobility – Beyond Communicating Vehicles
European efforts for more intelligent transport systems have a long history with the first programmes focusing on Road Transport Informatics (RTI) dating back to the 1980’s. The corresponding Intelligent Vehicles Safety Systems started even earlier in the late 1950’s by progressing from passive safety systems towards truly pro-active safety functions we envision today. The state of the art in road and vehicle safety is today represented by the concept of cooperative driving. Current cooperative driving is based on vehicles communicating with each other – widely regarded as vehicle-2-vehicle communication – and with the infrastructure – accordingly named vehicle-2-infrastructure communication. This development has been driven mainly by safety needs to provide travellers sufficient information early enough to be able to respond to dynamic traffic situations. Additionally, vehicles anonymously announcing their general position and velocity are set to be far more effective for assessing current traffic conditions and improving general traffic efficiency. Thus, vehicle-2-x communication technology (the “x” stands for vehicles and infrastructure) extends the range of vehicle sensors to yet unseen distances allowing vehicles to “see” around corners and warn drivers of upcoming dangers, making sure she or he can act in due time to avoid an accident or at least mitigate its impact.