We've spilled a lot of virtual ink over vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-grid communications. Both are promising technologies that could substantially reduce the number of traffic accidents and fatalities by allowing cars, traffic lights, and other elements of the driving environment to "talk" to one another, spotting trouble long before it happens.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been testing such systems in six U.S. cities. Now, according to NBC News, the National Transportation Safety Board is calling for an accelerated rollout of the technology on new cars.
The NTSB's recommendations come in the wake of two fatal school bus crashes—one in New Jersey, the other in Florida. In both cases, large trucks collided with buses at intersections, causing the deaths of young students.
From a technological perspective, the deployment of V2V and V2G systems makes a great deal of sense. Compared to other devices scheduled to appear on cars in the near future—devices like data recorders and backup cameras—V2V and V2G would likely result in exponentially safer roads and up to 81 percent fewer collisions.
What's more, the basic technology behind V2V and V2G systems already exists, and it could theoretically be scaled up fairly quickly. There are, however, at least three hurdles to overcome: bandwidth, money, and the law:
By "bandwidth", we don't mean the speed of the networks carrying and analyzing all this new data (though that could be a major concern in some areas). Instead, we mean the ability of corporations and governments to develop and install the devices, and subsequently, assess the findings.
This would likely be easier for car companies, who would simply need to place electronic beacons on vehicles. It could be much harder for cash-strapped municipalities to install cameras at every intersection. And of course, for every car or signal light without those devices, the systems become slightly less effective.
Then there's the question of money. The new technology would likely keep motorists safer on the roads, but how much would new-car buyers be willing to shell out for it? How would cities pay for all the devices used to monitor traffic?
Legal hurdles are even more complicated. As with autonomous cars (in which V2V and V2G technology will play a major role), there's the question of fault to consider. If accidents happen after the systems debut—as they surely will—who's at fault? The drivers? The automaker? The device manufacturer? The entity that monitors the network? And who's responsible for maintaining that network anyway?
There are other issues to consider, too—not least of which is the issue of privacy. After all, in order for these networks to function properly, they'll need to track every car's location, and if they're tracking every car's location...well, you see where that could lead.
And let's not forget about hacking: when we move from closed-car systems to true car networks, our vehicles become far more vulnerable to baddies.
Don't get us wrong: we're big fans of V2V and V2G. Besides, these tech genies are already out of the bottle, and there's no shoving them back in. It's not a question of if these networks will arrive, but when.
Before that happens, though, the NTSB, NHTSA, and many other organizations need to lay out new ground rules, because this is a whole new ball game.
Not soon enough.
We will see this within 5 years. Accidents caused by non-human error will be forgiven by insurance companies or "automatically" paid out by the software developers. However, since it is most likely that new infrastructure changes will be required for this technology, governments will most assuredly be involved in its development. Just like HIPPA standards are there for medical software the DOT will have similar prerequisites for autonomous software in vehicles. It will be a big government money maker. Not only that but the governments can get other information from your vehicles like traffic bottlenecks and where road repairs need to take place. It will be much more efficient.
Does this not paint a picture of a world that removes the human error from it? A world a little less wild. Little less fun maybe? It is a little scary... but safer right? What will we do with our new found safety? Will we be too domesticated? Humanity VS technology. :)
"Do not try and bend the spoon. That is impossible. Only try and realize the truth - there is no spoon."
2015...next decade...just around the corner.
There are mature technologies that should be blossoming right now that have been held back for too, too long by the Curmudgeons.
Fuel cells, hydrogen, self-drive technologies to name a few.
We've dipped our toes in...now take the plunge.
We tried pouring new wine into old skins with stimulus of 20th century industry. Result: no jobs.
Now it's the new companies turn! Let's go America!
V2V or V2I is not a necessary precondition to the deployment of self-driving cars. Such communication will be useful, but cars like the Google car get around just fine without it. As the author noted, it will take time for governments to decide what the infrastructure changes will be and to spend the money to develop and deploy it. It's better to let self-driving cars proceed on their own and not wait for these changes.
Laying down infrastructures without anybody actually using it is not the optimal solution. For example, Google Car that cost about $150,000 and other luxury driverless cars are ONLY available for the privilege and not for daily use by the general public. We need to unlock autonomous robot tech: (http://bit.ly/DIY-Robot-Kits) and make it open source so that anybody can tweak DRIVERLESS OWNERLESS ride for a future city and for cities like Detroit to get its mojo back.
The Elcano Project, an ultra-light automated vehicles project, was a sponsor of the workshop "Challenges and Opportunities of Road Vehicle Automation" (http://www.vehicleautomation.org). Speakers represented state, federal and international governments, BMW, VW, Volvo, Bosch and Google. They mostly looked at automation as improved cars; as a countermeasure, we demonstrated the Elcano vehicle. It was a good visual of how small automated vehicles can be. Dr. Folsom gave a presentation emphasizing the non-automobile path opened by road automation.
As one of the finalist for the #CrowdGrant by Popular Science, Elcano Project will improve urban planning and will accelerate the adoption of V2V and V2G technology. Support Elcano Project (http://www.rockethub.com/projects/28761-elcano-open-source-autonomous-vehicles) so general public can experiment with the self driving technology that encourage high fuel efficiency (1000 mpg / 0.25 L/100 km).
You might've already covered this in your V2V article: http://www.thecarconnection.com/news/1073248_can-smarter-cars-prevent-vehicle-crashes
Wireless mesh networks at 65MPH—linking cars to prevent crashes
On future highways, cars could travel in wirelessly connected caravans. http://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2013/01/wireless-mesh-networks-at-65mph-linking-cars-to-prevent-crashes/
til I looked at the check saying $4097, I didnt believe ...that...my neighbours mother was like they say truly making money part time from there labtop.. there uncles cousin started doing this less than twenty three months and by now repaid the mortgage on there place and bought a great new Lexus LS400. this is where I went..... www.Yad7.com
Wait...we "talk" to other drivers all the time with our fing... What? You mean that is not "talking?"
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