IIHS study: More automation leads to less distraction | FCC's shift of portion of 5.9 GHz spectrum spurs concerns | Video: Combining lidar, radar to "see" in bad weather
November 24, 2020
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A study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety looked at how drivers take command of the wheel while driving a self-driving car using Level 1 and Level 2 systems. Those in a Level 2 car, which keeps a car centered in a lane, kept a stronger focus on the road than those in the Level 1 cars, which use less technology.
Full Story: CNET (11/19) 
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FCC's shift of portion of 5.9 GHz spectrum spurs concerns
(Jeff Pachoud/Getty Images)
The Federal Communications Commission's decision to reallocate a portion of the 5.9 GHz spectrum for Wi-Fi use is being criticized by the transportation industry, which notes the spectrum's importance to public safety. The FCC decision opens the door for more use of cellular vehicle-to-everything, though many electronic and automotive engineers have voiced concerns that "there has not been sufficient study of the potential for cross-interference or overloading of the spectrum in which C-V2X now must operate," writes Bill Visnic.
Full Story: SAE International (11/23) 
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Innovation and Technology
Video: Combining lidar, radar to "see" in bad weather
(Bart Maat/AFP via Getty Images)
Researchers at the University of California at San Diego are combining radar and lidar technologies -- using each to overcome the limitations of the other -- to help self-driving cars "see" in bad weather. The university plans to work with Toyota to combine the technology with cameras.
Full Story: Electronics360 (11/20) 
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The Contra Costa Transportation Authority is working to develop new transportation technology, including autonomous vehicle development. The CCTA's GoMentum Station provides a dedicated secure testing facility for autonomous vehicle technology at a former military base.
Full Story: Engineering News-Record (tiered subscription model) (11/11) 
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Startup Lunewave will use $7 million in new financing to pursue commercial production of its autonomous vehicle radar systems. The company's broad-bandwidth sensors can produce high-quality, multidirectional beams, and Lunewave says just two of the sensors can do the work that would require 20 of today's standard radar sensors.
Full Story: TechCrunch (tiered subscription model) (11/23) 
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Policy News
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is seeking information on technology that prevents alcohol-impaired drivers from starting their cars. Various forms of such technology have been available since 1969 but have never been mandated as standard vehicle equipment.
Full Story: Streetsblog (11/16) 
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State DOTs plan for future of autonomous vehicles
(Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
State departments of transportation are increasing efforts to test and prepare for widespread use of autonomous vehicles on US roads. "Our goal is to continue to evolve the AV testing process alongside local partners ... working collaboratively and working to make AV deployment a success for everyone," said Kevin Biesty of the Arizona Department of Transportation.
Full Story: AASHTO Journal (11/20) 
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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced plans to invite public comment on ensuring the safety of autonomous vehicles. "This rulemaking will help address legitimate public concerns about safety, security and privacy without hampering innovation in the development of automated driving systems," said US Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao.
Full Story: Reuters (11/19) 
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Fully autonomous vehicles owned by Aptiv-Hyundai joint venture Motional can now be tested on roads in Nevada without a backup safety driver. The company currently is assessing the vehicles' performance and will begin public road testing early next year.
Full Story: TechCrunch (tiered subscription model) (11/17) 
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The trade association of the leading Autonomous, Crash Avoidance and Occupant Protection automotive safety suppliers. The mission of the Automotive Safety Council is to improve the safety of people through out the world through the development, production and implementation of the latest automotive safety equipment by preventing accidents, protecting occupants and pedestrians when in a collision and to notify emergency responders after the collision when necessary. The mission utilizes voluntary, regulatory and legislative directed use of these life saving products in order to make them available to the most people in the lowest cost manner to save the most people from injuries and fatalities.

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