In the latest twist on the bumpy road to autonomous vehicles, Continental has entered into a “collaborative evaluation partnership” with 3M to assess the infrastructure-to-vehicle (I2V) interface between infrastructure-related objects and technologies. This includes pavement markings, conspicuity film, signs and other landmarks on or near the roadways as well as vehicle-related technologies. In short, many milestones that need to be safely and repeatedly passed if and/or when vehicles are to become more autonomous.
By Continental’s admission, and an awareness of the enormity of the task that is becoming more collective admitted among previously unbridled automaker promoters, “current infrastructure is lacking some aspects of consistency, uniformity, performance specifications, and maintenance standards that are important for the industry to optimize the perception and localization capabilities of automated vehicles…
“While it is clear that infrastructure optimized solutions are not possible in the short term, our long-term goal is to find a more balanced solution,” Continental said.
The immediate hope is to help increase road safety while continuing to work toward automated driving solutions. As to when or if they appear remains a growing debate among makers and policy pundits.
Continental and 3M will “collaboratively evaluate the infrastructure and vehicle interface” in: localization and correction services using clear environmental landmarks for locating a vehicle on a high-definition map; identification and classification of objects in urban roadway environments including urban cross-walks, signalized intersections and other stationary and moving objects to improve safety; improved awareness of objects in and around work zones and the status of the work zones; and enhanced object detection using sensor fusion detectable infrastructure-related objects.