Summary Gerben Bootsma

Gerben Bootsma (AVV) talked about developing a Field Operational Test (FOT) with Advanced Driver Assistance (ADA) systems. The focus was on the pilot “The Assisted Driver”. This pilot is conducted within the Dutch Roads to the Future programme. The initial plan was to organize a large scale FOT with a combination of longitudinal (ACC) and lateral (LKS) functionality and to demonstrate the state of the art on ADA systems. Gradually, the plan had to be changed, for example due to technological issues. The presentation showed the set up of the pilot “The Assisted Driver” and the lessons learned from it.

“The Assisted Driver” consists of the following elements:

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Virtual reality

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Demonstration day

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FOT with LDW/HMW (Van pool)

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FOT with ACC/LDW (Full traffic)

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Clinic with ACC/LKS

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Presentation final report

The first two elements – Virtual reality and Demonstration day – have been completed in October 2004 and May 2005 respectively. The slides (see link below) will give you an idea of the contents of these actions. Lessons learned from the Demonstration day concerned among others paying good attention to logistics, spending enough time in the vehicle to gain experience with ADA system, and experience being more important than just looking at ‘intelligent vehicles’. The FOT with LDW/HMW is currently conducted. The FOT with ACC/LDW will start in February 2006. No date has been selected yet for the clinic with ACC/LKS.

During the FOT with LDW/HMW, about 15 van drivers will gain experience with these ADA systems on dedicated infrastructure (bus lane). The vans are equipped with the AWS Mobileye. This Advance Warning System includes: (1) Lane departure warning, (2) Forward collision warning, and (3) Headway monitoring and warning. The longitudinal driving task is supported via a display which can show: (a) Safe driving, (b) Driving too close (<1.2 s) or (c) Dangerous driving (<0.7 s). The most important lessons learned from the van pool pilot were to make clear agreements with supplying partners and to communicate well towards the participants. The van pool can be regarded as a “pre pilot” for the full traffic pilot.

Originally, the pilot would be conducted with vehicles equipped with a combination with ACC and LKS (Lane Keeping System). The combination of these ADA systems is already on the road in Japan. However, no such vehicles have entered the European market. Installing ADA systems afterwards (after market) appeared to be problematic due to the intervening character of ACC and LKS. Cars equipped with ACC are available in the Netherlands. Therefore, it was decided to equip ACC vehicles with LDW (i.e. a warning system instead of an intervening system). During the FOT with ACC/LDW, 20-40 cars (VW Passat) will gain experience with these ADA systems. An important lesson learned from the full traffic pilot was to keep it simple. Another lesson learned concerned to try to aim high and to not give up after the first disappointments.

Because no FOT could be conducted with ACC/LKS, a clinic with these ADA systems will be held. The idea is to let participants of the full traffic pilot drive with Japanese cars (e.g. Toyota, Honda) that are equipped with the combination of these systems. One of the lessons learned from the clinic is that the difference between the Dutch and Japanese culture makes it more complex.

After the presentation the question was posed when to call the pilot “The Assisted Driver” a success. The pilot would be a success if more knowledge was gained into the effects of these (combinations) of ADA systems on traffic safety, traffic efficiency and fuel consumption. For example, if these effects turn out be positive (i.e. increase of safety and efficiency, decrease of fuel consumption), it might be an idea to promote using such devices.

Click here for the slides of the presentation.