Leveraging Mobile Broadband for Safety and Economy
Of all the future advancements touted by the automotive industry in recent years, none has commanded as much attention as the prospect of the Intelligent Auto – vehicles equipped with a broadband networking capability that enables a wide array of enhanced safety, navigation, communications, and vehicle maintenance applications.
Such vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure communications scenarios may seem like wishful thinking promoted alongside ‘concept cars’ at the big auto shows, but the core technology behind it is widely used today in various industrial and military applications.
Connectivity is the catalyst that will propel this technology to widespread consumer and commercial use – and that connectivity is now available. Through the combination of Rajant BreadCrumb® wireless devices and InstaMesh® routing software, broadband wireless networks are created that can support hundreds of in-motion nodes without crippling the network with overhead.
Vehicles equipped with broadband would benefit from many of the applications used by ‘stationary’ network users. Terrestrial and satellite radio could be supplemented with the infinite variety of web-based radio. Emergency communication systems, like those offered by some auto manufacturers, could be replaced or augmented with VoIP and web-based alert systems.
By employing Rajant Kinetic Mesh Networking technology that is already proven in challenging, bandwidth- and application-intensive environments, and marrying it to existing on-board vehicle diagnostic systems, automakers, dealers, and fleet managers can realize immediate, substantial business benefits. Consumers would benefit from the added safety, fuel economy, and pre-emptive maintenance benefits that ultimately prolong the life of a vehicle.
Because the Rajant technology is highly scalable, and can accommodate multiple radios on a single node, future applications such as collision avoidance systems can be easily integrated into the existing system bus. The aggregate “actionable knowledge” gained by automobile makers will also impact future design considerations and improve the safety and efficiency of vehicles.
There are immediate environmental benefits as well. With 12 to 15 million vehicles sold annually in the U.S., the impact of pre-emptive diagnostics on fuel consumption, air pollution, and disposal of chemicals and components (tires, system fluids, heavy metal-based electronics) would be immediate and substantial.
Future applications of such technology include, but are not limited to:
- Plug-in expansion – add capabilities/applications quickly and cost effectively
- E-mail OS upgrades
- Improve future vehicle design based on massive real-world data points
- Future enhancements to fuel management, tire wear, air filter, oil filter, etc.
- Emergency alert/communications systems
- Regulatory compliance and data for reporting
- Extension for smart phone
- Internet radio – Unlimited variety
- Passengers: Full broadband Internet connectivity
- Traffic routing and traffic management