Audi of America, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) and Qualcomm Technologies have announced plans for initial deployments of Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything (C-V2X) communication on northern Virginia roadways to enhance vehicle safety.
The initial deployment is expected to take place on select roadways in Virginia beginning in the third quarter of 2020.
The initial deployments are aimed at expanding safety use cases in the vital connected vehicle safety spectrum established by the FCC, with the aim to curtail road hazards and fatalities. In a given year, traffic fatalities in the US exceed 36,0001 people yearly in the US.
This initial deployment is designed for connected car systems designed to boost safety around school buses, warn motorists about dangerous road conditions, alleviate congestion at traffic chokepoints and curbsides, help improve the performance of automated vehicles that are nearing commercialization and even potentially let cars communicate with mobile devices to send warnings that may one day help prevent the more than 6,000 pedestrian fatalities per year.
“VDOT has long supported research into the benefits of connected and automated vehicles, particularly those aspects that have the potential to significantly enhance safety,” said Virginia’s Director of Transportation Research and Innovation Cathy McGhee.
“The inclusion of shorter-range, direct communication in the 5.9 GHz band using C-V2X is exciting, as it can allow us to evaluate this emerging communication option for essential and practical safety and mobility services, including saving the lives of maintenance and construction personnel in work zones,” added McGhee.
Anupam Malhotra, Director, Connected Vehicle Services, Audi of America said, “We are excited about our participation in this pilot deployment as it highlights the broad societal advantages that technology is now poised to deliver through the full 5.9 GHz V2X spectrum near term with far, far more to come as connected and automated vehicle fleets emerge over the next decade.”
“Qualcomm Technologies is excited to work with VDOT, through its partner Virginia Tech and Audi to support the C-V2X use cases on the very same spectrum that the FCC has proposed to allocate for C-V2X. Qualcomm Technologies has long been a pioneer in the connected car with over 20 years of experience delivering in-vehicle telematic systems,” said Jim Misener, senior director, product management, Qualcomm Technologies.
“With the advances in cellular communications now enabling us to also offer direct connectivity for safety services, traffic efficiency and emerging automated use cases, we are pleased to work closely with VDOT, Audi of America and Virginia Tech to showcase the commercial maturity and technological sophistication of C-V2X and to start the proliferation of the technology on US roadways.”
The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) has been contracted to develop the software and systems necessary to support the primary use cases defined for the initial deployment. Following software development, the institute will then conduct a demonstration of C-V2X technology operating in these use cases.