Driverless Cars Working Together Could Speed Up Traffic 35%: University Study

When driverless cars are communicating with each other, overall traffic flow could be improved by at least 35%, according to a study conducted by researchers from the University of Cambridge.

The researchers programmed a small fleet of miniature robotic cars to drive on a multi-lane track and then observed the traffic flow when one of the cars was stopped.

When the cars were not driving in connected mode, any car behind the stopped car had to slow or stop to wait for a gap in traffic to pass the stopped car.

When the cars were communicating with each other, as soon as one car stopped, it notified all the other cars. Other cars near the stopped car then slowed slightly so cars behind the stopped car could change lanes without having to stop or slow significantly.

A further test involved adding an aggressive human-controlled driver into the mix. As that car moved around the track, the other cars were able to give way to avoid it.

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“Autonomous cars could fix a lot of different problems associated with driving in cities, but there needs to be a way for them to work together,” the researchers stated. “If different automotive manufacturers are all developing their own autonomous cars with their own software, those cars all need to communicate with each other effectively.”

The researchers adapted the cars with motion capture sensors and a Rasberry Pi, so the cars could communicate by Wi-Fi.

 

4 comments about "Driverless Cars Working Together Could Speed Up Traffic 35%: University Study".
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  1. R MARK REASBECK from www.USAonly.US , May 21, 2019 at 10:36 p.m.

    “Autonomous cars could fix a lot of different problems associated with driving in cities, but there needs to be a way for them to work together,” the researchers stated. “If different automotive manufacturers are all developing their own autonomous cars with their own software, those cars all need to communicate with each other effectively.”


    Good Luck with that.  They all have huge egos to be the first, the best, and spend the most $$$ inn development.
    I have to repeat my common sense approach because of the small, limited minds of the one track developers. I can't maintain a Sirius radio signal on the way to work, and these people expect billions of bits of information  to keeps cars on the road?  What about hackers?  system failure, Upgrades that didn't download?  what about municipalities having their traffic infrastructure "dialed" in to all of these various cars and trucks?

    You Cambridge folks, you keep practicing with your Marx Road Race sets, and make them do what you want to validate your experiments.

    DBA folks.......Dead before Arrival

  2. James m. Warner from Documensions, Inc. replied, May 23, 2019 at 10:31 a.m.

    Spot on Mark. Notice the other problem that such cooperation promotes:

      "A further test involved adding an aggressive human-controlled driver into the mix. As that car moved around the track, the other cars were able to give way to avoid it."

    In Boston this is the norm, not the exception. So the cooperating cars are rewarding the aggressive driver. That means before long all the other drivers will learn that aggression pays. And then we'll all be better off, right?

  3. R MARK REASBECK from www.USAonly.US , May 23, 2019 at 10:52 a.m.

    Yes James.  I've stated before, I'm going to "have my way" with these Auto-tonomous cars.  If I need to be in another lane, I just drift over , ever so slightly, and they will back-off and let me in. Once this catches on, it will take rwice as long for the self drivers to reach their destination.  Billions are wasted in development.

  4. Chuck Martin from Chuck Martin, May 23, 2019 at 10:52 a.m.

    Good point about behavioral change, James.

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