V2V is a whole lot more than just crash avoidance technology, but allow me to take a moment and describe some of its phenomenal crash avoidance capabilities. Imagine how secure you would feel if your vehicle could warn you of a stopped vehicle in your immediate path or warn you of an unseen vehicle speeding towards an intersection that you are about to enter. This type of information could virtually prevent rear-end collisions and make even the most dangerous intersections much safer.
This innovative technology utilizes dedicated short-range radio communication (DSRC) devices to allow vehicles to communicate with each other as well as with various other strategically placed traffic signals and markers. Information like vehicle speed, vehicle heading, braking status, and steering input can be shared with vehicles in close proximity in order to prevent motor vehicle crashes.
DSRC communication devices are two-way wireless components that permit the secure and rapid delivery of data necessary to make V2V practical in the real world. These short-range wireless devices transmit information over an approximate radius of 1,000-feet (depending upon the geographic surroundings).
Since the range of communication systems equipped with DSRC sensors is approximately twice the distance of those equipped with ultrasonic sensors, radar sensors, and cameras, they afford more time for the driver to be warned and react.
These transmissions occur in a dedicated Federal Communications Commission (FCC) band which has been allocated specifically for Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) that pertain to vehicle safety and mobility applications. Because this particular band has very few preexisting users, it provides a relatively clear operating environment that virtually guarantees an unimpeded and interference-free communication signal.
In vehicles equipped with V2V, a basic safety message (BSM) is exchanged between vehicles. The BSM is updated and broadcast up to 10 times per second to surrounding vehicles. The BSM contains vehicle signature and vehicle dynamics information such as heading, speed, and location. The information is received by the other vehicles equipped with V2V devices and processed to determine possible threats of vehicle collision. In the event of an impending collision, a warning would be issued to the driver prompting him (or her) to take appropriate action to avoid an imminent crash.
Additionally, since V2V systems use radio transmitters, they can see around corners and through objects which blind ultrasonic sensors, radar sensors, and cameras. This gives the V2V equipped vehicle a distinct advantage when it comes to accident prevention warning capabilities.
Since V2V technology can be used in conjunction with existing systems that utilize ultrasonic sensors, radar sensors, and cameras, it helps to provide a firm foundation for realizing widespread vehicle automation in the U.S. and worldwide. By augmenting V2V technology with mitigated braking, lane departure and correction, and frontal collision avoidance systems, driving will become safer than many people dreamed possible. For more detailed information on how the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) feels the various levels of vehicle automation will help reduce crashes and how on-board systems may someday work cooperatively with V2V technology, see the NHTSA’s Preliminary Statement of Policy on Vehicle Automation from May of 2013.
V2V systems will also provide vehicle owners with vital repair and maintenance warnings, as well as a seemingly endless stream of communication data pertinent to the vehicle’s specific location, speed, heading, etc. This is impressive technology that will certainly make our roads safer and our lives less stressful but some believe that the nature of the devices will afford authorities and criminals alike far too much information about the whereabouts and habits of individual citizens. Like it or hate it – it’s coming – get ready.