Volvo Tests Technology to Make Winter Driving Safer

Posted by at 3:36 pm on March 21, 2014

Volvo Winter DrivingVolvo aims to reduce the number of accidents and panicked moments for drivers by having its vehicles talk to one another.

As part of a pilot project, Volvo is teaming up with the Swedish Transport Administration and Norwegian Public Roads Administration to establish a cloud-based system which will inform drivers and road maintanence crews about specific areas of reduced road friction. The system is fairly simple: hit a patch of slippery road and the Volvo’s on-board computer will detect the car’s tyres struggling for grip, which will activate a warning on the dashboard and send a warning to a database in the cloud, thanks to an onboard mobile data network.

The warning is then sent to any cars in the nearby vicinity, as well as any drivers heading in the direction of the warning area. Another signal is simultaneously sent to the administrators of the stretch of road to help them better target road maintenance crews to treat the problem and avoid further incidents: be it salt the ice, clear debris, plow the road or shut it down.

“When the road administrator has access to information from a large number of cars, the data can be used to make winter road maintenance more efficient,” said Erik Israelsson, Project Leader Cooperative ITS (Intelligent Transport System) at Volvo Cars. “The information could help to improve road safety further for all road users. This could also reduce the use of salt when not needed and minimise the environmental impact.”

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