In a demonstration on the A58, a platoon of cars fitted with Cooperative Adaptive Cruise Control (CACC) was connected to the existing ITS infrastructure. The methods used and experiences gained are set out in TNO’s recently published report ‘CACC on the A58 motorway – lessons learned’. The valuable input gleaned from this demonstration will be used to further refine the technologies used.
The demonstration described was conducted in late May 2016 in an actual traffic situation on the A58, at the request of the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment’s Optimising Use programme. It involved connecting the CACC technology to the available data infrastructure on the A58 between Tilburg and Eindhoven, and then showing how the platoon of cars was able to use this to respond to traffic a few kilometres further down the road. This stretch of the A58 has been equipped with a total of 34 WiFi beacons by partners (market players* and government) as part of the Shockwave Traffic Jams A58 project. The aim of this project is to develop new mobility services to improve accessibility in one of the country’s busiest regions.
In close collaboration with these parties, TNO succeeded in quickly adapting the CACC systems and technologies so that they could be connected to the ITS infrastructure. This enabled the CACC cars to automatically adjust their speed based on speed advice derived from the traffic situation further down the road and transmitted in-car by means of roadside communication. The cars responded not only to their immediate environment by means of their own sensors, but also to what was happening relatively far away, well beyond the reach of their own traffic sensors. Consequently, drivers could ‘look beyond their own windshield’ and anticipate the traffic situation further down the road in good time. In the future, this development can improve the flow of traffic and traffic safety and ensure that people can travel increasingly faster, as well as more comfortably and reliably.
The methods used to integrate the systems, and the experiences and knowledge gained, are described at length in TNO’s report ‘CACC on the A58 motorway – lessons learned’. This report is available via the knowledge base on the website for the Shockwave Traffic Jams A58 project.
A few highlights from the report:
Description of the prerequisites for proper integration of the technologies in practice. For example, it is important for traffic safety that the shockwave traffic jam service’s speed advice does not suddenly require major changes in speed or overly large deviations from the surrounding traffic.
A few adaptations are needed to integrate the systems, such as expanding the CACC system’s ITS-G5 functionality with an option for the specific (TSM) messages that the shockwave traffic jam service uses for its speed advice.
* The companies Be-Mobile, Innovactory, Siemens, Technolution, Vialis and V-tron.
The Province of Noord-Brabant and the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment’s investment programme Optimising Use are the joint contracting authority for the project Shockwave Traffic Jams A58. The market, the government and knowledge institutions work closely together to improve the accessibility of the country’s busiest regions, in part by using intelligent transport services. With the shockwave traffic jam service as a basis, the project partners are developing the building blocks for new in-car mobility services. The architecture and infrastructure on the A58 are such building blocks; others could be a system for data security and protocols for their interaction.
Via the WiFi beacons along the side of the road and the underlying technical infrastructure, the shockwave traffic jam service collects precise information about traffic congestion and traffic waves. The service immediately converts these data into personalised, in-car speed advice that is dependent on the traffic situation. People receive this advice in their car via an app.
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