An intersection belonging to the AURORA test bed comprises a Dedicated Short Range Communications (DSRC) Roadside Unit, a Universal Software Radio Peripheral (USRP), and these: a 360-degree camera and Wi-Fi access points.
state of the traffic signals… all of that.” Cross explains that Surrey could then analyze all the video footage from all of its cameras and identify collisions and close calls. “My hope would be, perhaps we can then make changes,” he says. “If we really understand what those safety issues are, it would help engineers come up with solutions to avert [dangerous situations]. Maybe there will be people that won’t be injured or killed because of work that engineers and technologists are doing.” Despite the power of Surrey’s Traffic Management Centre, Cross admits that there are limitations. While ITS can communicate with their own components, the vehicles themselves are independent elements that do whatever they want. “The whole field of connected vehicles means you can have vehicle-to-vehicle communication, and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication,” he said. He used the emergency dispatch alert system as an example: if drivers don’t call emergency services, his staff may not learn about a collision; if radio stations don’t relay the ITS traffic alert, or drivers aren’t listening to the radio, ITS effectiveness is reduced. Cross also says that connected vehicles could receive communications from traffic-signal equipment about optimal vehicle speeds. Or, perhaps, drivers can receive an emergency alert and the vehicle may brake if the ITS system anticipates a collision with a vulnerable user, like a pedestrian or cyclist. Although Cross acknowledges that connections to vehicles are limited, he’s also interested in how connected-vehicle testing—like UBC’s recently announced Automotive Test Bed for Reconfigurable and Optimized Radio Access (AURORA) project—turns out.
P hoto : C lare K iernan /UBC
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