In this presentation at the PARMA 2019 Annual Risk Management Conference, Anthony Andreoni, PE, MBA, ASE, at Jensen Hughes, provided information about the latest autonomous vehicle technologies and driver-assist systems.
According to SAE International, the global leader in technical learning for the mobility industry, there are currently five levels of autonomy for vehicles:
- Level 0 – No Automation: Zero autonomy. The driver performs all driving tasks.
- Level 1 – Driver Assistance: Vehicle is controlled by the driver, but includes some driving assistance features.
- Level 2 – Partial Automation: Has combined automated functions like acceleration and steering, but the driver must remain engaged and monitor the environment at all times.
- Level 3 – Conditional Automation: Driver is a necessity, but is not required to monitor the environment. The driver must be ready to take control at all times with notice.
- Level 4 – High Automation: Vehicle is capable of performing all driving functions under certain conditions. The driver may have the option to control the vehicle.
- Level 5 – Full Automation: The vehicle is capable of performing all driving functions under all conditions. The driver may have the option to control the vehicle.
Major manufacturers already have cars on the market with a level 2 autonomy, including emergency auto braking, lane departure correction, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, real-time traffic updates through GPS systems and national command centers for emergencies (like GM’s On-Star™ system).
The push for self-driving automobiles is, in part, a response to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s statistic that approximately 94% of crashes involve human error. Many of the technology targets poor driver decisions, including:
- Mobileye – Uses cameras for visual detection designed to keep employees safe as they drive from work site to work site.
- Lidar – Addresses light detection and ranging by illuminating a target with a laser.
- 5G – This fifth-generation high-speed wireless service offers higher transfer speeds and capacity with much lower latency.
- V2V & V2I – Vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication.
A large benefit of this autonomous technology is that it provides data that can collect evidence in the event of a collision. This data can include various communication data, recorded data, software code evaluation, surveillance (including vehicle videos/photos) and other network data.