Ford starts testing V2X on public roads in China
Ford Motor Company has successfully conducted tests of Cellular Vehicle-To-Everything (C-V2X) technologies for the first time on public roads in China, as part of an ongoing pilot project in Wuxi, Jiangsu.
The company showcased the C-V2X testing during live demonstrations in Ford vehicles as part of the 2018 World Internet of Things Expo in Wuxi between September 15 and 18.
As the first initiative of its kind in China, the project marks a significant milestone in Ford's contribution to the development of C-V2X technology, which will play a key role in improving automotive safety, supporting traffic efficiency and enhancing automated driving worldwide. Ultimately, this could help to reduce gridlock, free up curb space and decrease road hazards.
C-V2X is an advanced wireless communications technology that allows vehicles, infrastructure, pedestrians and all traffic participants to "speak the same language" in real time. This technology supplements vehicle sensors and enables vehicles, stoplights, traffic signs, cyclists and pedestrian devices to share information about their status, location and next move. The system can operate with or without a cellular network, which means alerts can be sent during critical moments when they are needed most.
Since May, Ford has conducted technical tests as part of Wuxi's LTE-V2X pilot project "“ the world's first city-level project of its kind performed on public roads "“ to assess the performance of C-V2X connected car technology, with the goal of seeing it adopted. LTE-V2X, along with the evolution from 4G to 5G, is the first phase of C-V2X technology.
Working together with local partners in Wuxi, including Huawei and China Mobile, the Ford team uses direct and network modes of C-V2X technology "“ and insights from driver behaviors and traffic situations in China "“ to develop various "use cases" for Vehicle-to-Infrastructure (V2I), Vehicle-to-Vehicle (V2V) and Vehicle-to-Pedestrian (V2P) features.
"With its ability to safely and securely connect vehicles, along with its evolution into 5G, C-V2X is integral to Ford's vision for future transportation in which all vehicles and infrastructure talk to each other," said Thomas Lukaszewicz, manager automated driving, Ford Asia Pacific and Europe. "We are excited to be part of successful demonstrations in Wuxi and elsewhere, which continue to promote the development of C-V2X worldwide."
As part of the Wuxi tests, V2I features demonstrate communication between vehicles and the city's traffic management system. With this technology, drivers can receive notifications about the status and duration of red and green traffic lights, and be alerted to potential red light violations. Drivers can also receive speed range recommendations to optimise fuel economy and traffic efficiency.
Further leveraging C-V2X technology, Ford vehicles can receive alerts about unexpected situations such as nearby construction zones, accidents, traffic jams or emergency vehicles, enabling drivers to plan new routes to avoid congestion and reduce commute time on the road.
Two V2V features "“ Emergency Electronic Brake Light (EEBL) and Intersection Movement Assist (IMA) "“ demonstrate communication between connected vehicles for improved safety and traffic efficiency. By using C-V2X technology, the EEBL feature detects "hard braking" signals when the car in front blocks the driver's view, which can potentially help to anticipate and prevent rear-end crashes. At blind intersections, the IMA feature alerts vehicles about an approaching vehicle, helping drivers to avoid side collisions.
Finally, the V2P feature, Vulnerable Road User Collision Warning, detects moving pedestrians and cyclists in front of vehicles and notifies the driver of potential collisions.
Jointly led by several government agencies, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the Ministry of Public Security, the Jiangsu Government and the Wuxi Traffic Police Division, the Wuxi project allows for communication between connected vehicles and the city's traffic management system, including traffic lights in urban areas and major highways in Wuxi.
The Wuxi project aligns with other recent successful global C-V2X tests involving Ford and their partners, including one in Denver, Colorado in August with Panasonic and Qualcomm, and another in Paris in July, conducted in association with the BMW Group, Groupe PSA, Qualcomm and Savari Inc. Late last year, Ford and Datang, a leading Chinese telecommunications equipment group, conducted C-V2X technology trials at the National Intelligent Vehicle Pilot Zone in Shanghai.
"We are proud of the progress we've made in C-V2X development around the world, which is critical to achieving Ford's vision of building smart vehicles for a smart world," said Julius Marchwicki, director, connected vehicle platform & product delivery, Ford Asia Pacific. "With fast, safe and secure communication between the components of a mobility network, we can achieve a more sustainable transportation system and more enjoyable experience for all."