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When Cars Communicate

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When it comes to buying a car, consumers usually enquire about mileage, road safety and maintenance cost etc. Nowadays, more and more cars come with new features and hi-tech gadgets for the customers. But the best of cars, can't make driving in congested roads easy. A group of researchers from Australia were recently in India to hold talks with IT firms like Tech Mahindra, TCS, Infosys, HCL and Cognizant for developing a system to address traffic problems.

Professor Jugdutt Singh, Director of the Centre for Technology Infusion at the La Trobe University, Australia, who was a member of the research delegation, during a recent visit to New Delhi informed the media that the researchers at the university have already built a patented system for automobiles using sensor technology to enable vehicle-to-vehicle communication.

The pilot phase of implementing the technology has already started in Victoria, Australia. By using this technology, cars can signal to each other to align in such a way that congestion is avoided.

Some firms have already shown interest in collaborating for developing advanced transportation software, which help ease off the traffic especially in regions where huge numbers of vehicles ply on less road space, leading to congestions.

While planning to implement the technology in India, the first thing that came to his mind was the traffic in Delhi and Mumbai, said Professor Singh.

A sensor with Dedicated Short Range Communication (DSRC) technology embedded in the vehicles convey information about the traffic scenario while on-the-drive display and voice messages help the driver avoid heading towards traffic jams. Also, this information can be shared amongst vehicles within a radius of 500 meters to 1 km. This technology will also keep a check on errant drivers as a warning will be sent to the rashly driven vehicle by the other car near it using the same technology. However, this will only be possible if all cars come embedded with the sensor.

The privacy settings have been designed in a way that information regarding only traffic congestion, accidents on the road, rash driving and related matters could be exchanged and couldn’t be misused.

Ccording to the researchers, this could be the next big thing after the mileage and maintaining cost in encouraging prospective buyers.

Singh mentioned that the cars with this new technology will start rolling out by 2015.

In the long run, the researchers can look at further upgrading the solution by connecting with the emergency help-lines such as fire brigade, police control room, ambulance services, women help-lines etc which will come as a handy help to anyone and everyone driving on the road. Technology is a tool which has a large scope for improvement with each passing day and with the kind of resources available these days it’s even easier to implement it.

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