Bumper-To-Bumper At High Speeds: A Vision-Based System For High Efficiency Vehicle Platoons In Metropolitan Areas

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University:Carnegie Mellon University
Principal Investigator:Srinivasa Narasimhan
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Funding Source(s) and Amounts Provided (by each agency or organization): $76,401.00
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Project Status:Complete
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Abstract:Traffic congestion is a growing problem and is estimated to increase by 50% in the next 15 years without significant action [2]. Vehicle platooning is an exciting concept has been demonstrated on highways showing improvements in fuel efficiency, travel time, safety, and environmental impact. However, the high cost of infrastructure changes and in-vehicle technologies required does not justify about 10-20% [7] efficiency demonstrated to-date. Minimizing the inter-vehicle distance and increasing speed of vehicles safely has the potential to double or even triple the efficiencies on both highways and city roads. But, unfortunately, the existing in-vehicle, V2V or V2I sensing technologies are woefully inadequate for these purposes (too slow or bulky or poor accuracy or expensive).

The goal of the proposed research is to develop computer vision-based system for high-speed and high-precision estimation of inter-vehicle distances. A comprehensive study will be conducted to evaluate the impact of gap distance on traffic throughput and energy efficiencies. Based on the findings, we will develop a smart, cost-effective sensing and processing system that can work reliably for very short gap distances in all lighting and weather conditions. We already have collaborations with Traffic 21 (UTC TSET), NSF funded CPS project partners in RI and ECE (Hebert, Bagnell, Mertz), collaborations with industry (funding from Intel, Ford and likely GM), and endorsements for collaborations with Pittsburgh city and local partners like GASP and CMU CREATE Labs to study environmental effects (air quality) of traffic and industrial sources. The funding from Metro 21 will help put together a larger and longer-term effort in solving the transportation, environmental and energy problems in America.
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