The notion of cars communicating with one another is about to go real world as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will launch trials of cars that “speak” to each other over the 5.9 GHz band.
Known as the Safety Pilot, the trial will begin next August and run for a year in Ann Arbor, MI, using 3,000 cars equipped with vehicle to vehicle (V2V) technology. Under the system, a car that is entering an intersection would get a warning to brake as another car speeds into that same crossroads.
“The technology is here today, and it works,” says Roger Berg, VP of wireless technology at Denso International America, which demonstrated the technology last week, according to Automotive News.
Denso hopes to supply the technology to automakers.
The technology is based on GPS and on-board diagnostic data that a car broadcasts over a 5.9 GHz network. All V2V cars could communicate on this band, each sharing data such as speed and location, explained Autopia. The cars would include computers that permit them to detect the presence of other vehicles and calculate if it’s time to hit the brakes or warn the driver of a potential crash.
The technology is considered an improvement over current lane assist and crash avoidance systems that rely on a single car detecting possible hazards. With V2V, the cars get a better “situational awareness” of the other cars in close proximity.
NHTSA says widespread deployment could help prevent up to 76 percent of accidents.
All the major car companies are working on V2V technology including Ford and General Motors reports ABC News. Ford says the cars communicate within 300 meters of each other, sending signals 10 times per second.