Intelligent cars and cooperative roads – welcome to the future of driving

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PETER MORSINK, SENIOR CONSULTANT, TRANSPORT & ROAD SAFETY, ROYAL HASKONINGDHV

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The potential impact of self-driving cars could be huge in reducing road accidents. In addition, when platoons of these cars follow each other at constant speed, road capacity is increased and there is less congestion, fuel consumption and emissions. How can we prepare our roads and drivers for the transition?

In 2016 Royal HaskoningDHV was involved in a successful test with more than fifty semi-autonomous vehicles driven alongside normal traffic on a public road which took place near Amsterdam in the Netherlands – the first of its kind in Europe. In collaboration with Aon we also conducted the first test on a public road in Belgium. We carried out the design and evaluation of the demonstration for both tests. It revealed what existing safety features can achieve and that there is a need for further improvements.

Road authorities have a role, for example by improving the quality of road markings detected by in-car camera systems to create cooperative cars and roads. Last year Royal HaskoningDHV did a study on this for Rijkswaterstaat, part of the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment. Furthermore we are exploring how to integrate advanced driver assistance systems into driver testing and training in cooperation with relevant organisations.

Peter Morsink, Senior Consultant Mobility and Traffic Safety, said: “A three-pronged approach connecting hardware (vehicle technology and infrastructure), software (using skills and knowledge coupled with insights into human behaviour) and orgware (community and stakeholder engagement) will be vital to ensure the sustainable development and deployment of self-driving cars.”

An approach connecting hardware, software and orgware will be vital to ensure the sustainable development and deployment of self-driving cars.

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© Royal HaskoningDHV 2017

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