Volvo Car Group has completed a research project using magnets in the roadway to help the car determine its position.
The research, which has been financed in strategic co-operation with the Swedish Transport Administration (Trafikverket), is a potential key to the implementation of self-driving vehicles.
Reliable and highly accurate positioning is one of the crucial issues in the development of self-driving cars.
While established positioning technologies such as GPS and cameras have limitations in certain conditions, road-integrated magnets remain unaffected by physical obstacles and poor weather conditions.
“The magnets create an invisible ‘railway’ that literally paves the way for a positioning inaccuracy of less than one decimetre. We have tested the technology at a variety of speeds and the results so far are promising,” says Jonas Ekmark, Preventive Safety Leader at Volvo Car Group.
Volvo Cars plays a leading role in a large-scale autonomous driving pilot project in which 100 self-driving Volvo cars will use public roads in everyday driving conditions around the Swedish city of Gothenburg.
“Our aim is for the car to be able to handle the driving all by itself. Accurate, reliable positioning is a necessary prerequisite for a self-driving car,” explains Jonas Ekmark. He adds: “It is fully possible to implement autonomous vehicles without changes to the present infrastructure. However, this technology adds interesting possibilities, such as complementing road markings with magnets.”
Helps prevent run-off road accidents
In parallel with the potential in the field of autonomous driving, road-integrated magnets open up a number of other possibilities:
- Incorporating magnet-based positioning in preventive safety systems could help prevent run-off road accidents.
- Magnets could facilitate accuracy of winter road maintenance, which in turn could prevent damage to snow-covered objects, such as barriers and signs, near the road edge.
- There is also a possibility of more efficient utilisation of road space since accurate positioning could allow lanes to be narrower.
Accurate, reliable and cost-effective
Volvo Cars’ research team created a 100-metre long test track at the company’s testing facilities in Hällered outside Gothenburg, Sweden. A pattern of round ferrite magnets (40×15 mm) was located 200 mm below the road surface. The car was equipped with several magnetic field sensors.
The research programme was designed to evaluate crucial issues, such as detection range, reliability, durability, cost and the impact on road maintenance.
“Our experience so far is that ferrite magnets are an efficient, reliable and relatively cheap solution, both when it comes to the infrastructure and on-board sensor technology. The next step is to conduct tests in real-life traffic,” explains Jonas Ekmark.
The Latest on: Self-driving cars
via Google News
The Latest on: Self-driving cars
- Europeans Buying Electric Cars May Lift Weak Lithium Marketon August 9, 2020 at 11:00 pm
European consumers are getting hefty incentives to buy electric cars, mining projects are getting delayed and some auto plants are reopening. All of that will pull lithium out of the doldrums.
- Hydrogen Cars a Step Closer in Sydney After Hyundai Supply Dealon August 9, 2020 at 6:17 pm
Hydrogen-powered vehicles could soon be more common on the streets of Australia’s biggest city after Hyundai Motor Co. reached a supply deal for the zero-emissions fuel with local producers.
- Self-driving power-player salaries revealed: How much Waymo, Cruise, and Zoox employees make, from engineers to managerson August 9, 2020 at 8:41 am
Six-figure salaries are the norm at the self-driving industry's major players like Argo AI, Aurora Innovation, Cruise, Waymo, and Zoox.
- America's big cities have blocked off streets to cars during the pandemic. It should stay that way.on August 9, 2020 at 6:33 am
Cars have come to dominate the streets of big cities, but the pandemic is starting to give more room for bikes and pedestrians.
- Maybe Baby Yoda Ought To Be Adorned On The Hood Of Every Self-Driving Caron August 8, 2020 at 8:37 am
Headlines have blared that resistance is futile when trying to defy the mind-force allure of Baby Yoda, and indeed some exhort that Baby Yoda managed to break the interne t. Baby Yoda, love you must!
- Driverless Cars Gain Speed, Despite Global Slowdownon August 7, 2020 at 10:59 am
Automakers Volkswagen, Ford, and General Motors are betting billions that autonomous driving will get us moving again.
- Yandex begins testing self-driving cars in Michiganon August 6, 2020 at 5:00 am
Yandex announced it will begin testing self-driving cars in the city of Ann Arbor, Michigan, expanding from test sites that include Tel Aviv and Moscow.
- Russian company Yandex sets up self-driving car testing in Ann Arbor, Michiganon August 6, 2020 at 4:15 am
In fact, the company released a video of one of its self-driving test Priuses driving around Ann Arbor for an hour with no human intervention (that we can see) and no human in the ...
- Ex-Google engineer sentenced to 18 months for stealing self-driving car secretson August 5, 2020 at 8:59 am
A former Google executive who stole thousands of documents about its self-driving car project before resigning and going to Uber was sentenced Tuesday to 18 months behind bars. Anthony Levandowski, 40 ...
- Ex-Google engineer sentenced to 18 months in prison for stealing self-driving car fileson August 5, 2020 at 2:41 am
Anthony Levandowski, a former Uber executive, was sentenced to 18-months in prison on Tuesday after pleading guilty to stealing proprietary self-driving car technology from Google, which he had ...
via Bing News