Networking system warns drivers of traffic jams

Drivers may be warned of accidents and traffic jams before they see them using a networking system developed at Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute.

The car-to-car and car-to-infrastructure communication software (C2X) claims to improve traffic safety and efficiency using GPS and a wifi hub modified for vehicles.

Josef Jiru, Fraunhofer project manager, said: ‘The vehicle’s position and sensor data on speed, acceleration or sliding can be reported to wireless communication nodes called roadside units [RSUs].’

RSUs give cars information on road conditions ahead, from crashes to the correct speed for arriving at a green light.

C2X combines three readings to keep drivers informed. First, messages describing position, direction of motion and vehicle speed are transmitted between cars and RSUs.

Second, it uses collective information from traffic events. For example, several vehicles braking aggressively is interpreted as an accident.

Third, this is then combined with general traffic readings such as traffic-light sequences sourced from car-to-car transmissions. RSUs combine this with radio and traffic-centre information.

Fraunhofer is presenting the software at the Embedded World Exhibition and Conference from 1–3 March.