Ford tests car2x communications

March 22, 2011 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Automotive OEM Ford has jumped on the car2x communications bandwagon: The company has installed an "intelligent intersection" near its R&D center in Detroit. The tests are intended to help Ford designers to better integrate car2x functions into on-board driver assistance systems.

In the context of the car2x test installation, traffic lights at the "intelligent intersection" transmit their current status to vehicles in the surroundings. The car2x system in the vehicles receives the signals, compares with its GPS position data and determines if the driver apparently runs the risk of violating the stop signal. In this case, the car2x system in the respective vehicle issues an optical and acoustical warning to the driver, but also to other vehicles approaching the intersection.

Also in Europe Ford is participating in car2x-related R&D. Along with other carmakers, research institutes and government organizations, the Ford Research Center in Aachen is involved in the research project "Safe Intelligent Mobility" (SIM). This large trial is focused on the Frankfurt region with field tests regarding the suitability for everyday use of cooperative wireless communication systems involving vehicles and traffic infrastructure. 400 vehicles are participating; the project will be completed in 2012.

In addition to the SIM project, Ford also participates in the DRIVE C2X project which aims at establishing Europe-wide standards for networked communications and applications systems such as car-to-car and car-to-infrastructure communications. In the scope of this project, field trials under real-world conditions are conducted in seven European regions. The test includes trials with harmonized communications technologies for driver assistance systems such as the European emergency brake light.