Enhanced safety and efficiency – these are the most important benefits expected from autonomous vehicles and advanced driver assistance systems. For these to operate in a highly reliable way, a robust and precise positioning solution is required. Delivering such a solution has been the main purpose of the PRoPART project. Through exploitation of the distinguished features of Galileo in combination with other positioning and sensor technologies, shared using V2X technology, this goal was achieved. The project culminated in a successful demonstration last week at AstaZero Proving Ground in Sandhult, near Borås, Sweden.
The solution, developed during the project, was demonstrated in a recreated highway situation, with a connected autonomous truck in the presence of two unconnected human-driving cars. The truck wishes to make a safe and efficient lane change. The decision to change lane or refrain from changing lane was made by the PRoPART system, relying on combined, centimetre accurate positioning data and collaborative perception sensor data fusion. In this scenario the lane change manoeuvre was executed by a self-driving truck from Scania, entirely relying on the PRoPART solution for situational awareness.
The importance of the PRoPART project lies in delivering a robust solution for the future mass market of autonomous road transport, that fulfils the different needs of vehicle OEMs. It uses object detection sensors as well as position and time information from both the autonomous vehicle as well as similar information from road side detection units by means of V2X communication, providing remote sensing of non-connected vehicles, offering a reliable solution for the transition period when both automated and non-automated vehicles are using the roads.
7 partners from 4 European countries
The project combined RTK Positioning Software from Waysure (Sweden) with satellite measurements, in particular advanced Galileo signals for improved accuracy and authentication from Fraunhofer IIS (Germany). The satellite positioning has been augmented with an Ultra-Wideband (UWB) ranging solution from Spanish research institution Ceit-IK4. The self-driving truck was supplied by Scania, with Hungary-based V2X company Commsignia providing in the C-ITS technology. Baselabs from Germany provided sensor data fusion of onboard and road-side sensors and developed a situational assessment for the intended automated lane change manoeuvre. The project was coordinated by the Research Institute of Sweden (RISE).
Real Time Kinematic software solution
RTK is a technique widely used for precise GNSS positioning based on the use of code and carrier phase measurements from the primary GNSS constellation(s). The use of carrier phase measurements allows cm-level accuracies at the expense of having to solve the integer ambiguity of such carrier signals, which is a sophisticated process with a certain convergence time. The main inconvenience of the RTK technique is that it requires a reference station relatively close to the user so that the differential satellite and transmission medium errors are negligible, of which ionospheric delay is the largest contributor. A way to partially overcome such inconvenience appears with network RTK (NRTK or virtual RTK) which uses a set of reference stations to provide correction data local to the user. In any case, RTK/NRTK approaches work well with baselines no longer than about 15 km for single frequency solutions with the required precision of autonomous vehicle applications. Where multiple GNSS frequencies are used the ionospheric error can be accounted for as it has a frequency dependent effect increasing the operational baseline length.
This project has received funding from the European GNSS Agency under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 innovation programme under grant agreement No 776307.
RISE is the Swedish Research Institute and innovation partner. In international collaboration with industry, academia and the public sector, we ensure the competitiveness of the business community and contribute to a sustainable society. Our 2,800 employees support and promote all manner of innovative processes. RISE is an independent, state-owned research institute that offers unique expertise and about 100 testbeds and demonstration facilities, instrumental in future-proofing technologies, products and services.
Waysure contribute to safer and more sustainable future transport system by enabling autonomous platforms through precision positioning. Waysure’s high accuracy, high integrity solution is a key source of information in the self-driving sensor suite. The precise positioning software solution enables accurate and affordable positioning for mass markets such as autonomous vehicles, micro-mobility, drones and precision agriculture.
Ceit-IK4 is a non-profit research centre that was created by the University of Navarra in 1982. Our primary mission is to carry out applied industrial research projects under contract, working closely with our clients’ R&D departments. Ceit-IK4 seeks regular collaboration with companies in a range of sectors (railway, aeronautical, automotive, health, manufacturing, energy and environment) and strives to understand all aspects of our clients’ business in order to develop high value-added solutions through applied investigation projects. In addition to offering innovative solutions to our clients, Ceit-IK4 trains young researchers who are preparing to join the labour market and add value to the production system.
Thus, Ceit-IK4 contributes applying own technology and knowledge to different sectors with the development of embedded systems designing advanced sensors to provide high accuracy and low-cost solutions.
Scania is a world-leading provider of transport solutions. Together with our partners and customers we are driving the shift towards a sustainable transport system. In 2018, we delivered 88,000 trucks, 8,500 buses as well as 12,800 industrial and marine engines to our customers. Net sales totalled to over SEK 137 billion, of which about 20 percent were services-related. Founded in 1891, Scania now operates in more than 100 countries and employs some 52,000 people. Research and development are concentrated in Sweden, with branches in Brazil and India. Production takes place in Europe, Latin America and Asia, with regional production centres in Africa, Asia and Eurasia. Scania is part of TRATON SE. For more information visit: www.scania.com.
About Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS
The Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS in Erlangen is one of the world’s leading application-oriented research institutions for microelectronic and IT system solutions and services. The Fraunhofer IIS branch in Nürnberg concentrates its competencies in positioning and identification technologies, wireless communication as well as energy-efficient system solutions in the areas of production, security, mobility and IoT. We offer standardized positioning and networking technologies that deliver impressive accuracy, real-time capability and intelligent processing in various digital applications. One key activity in Nürnberg with over 20 years of experience is the development of customized, high-precision GNSS receivers and antennas for specific applications that process signals from a combination of different sources including Galileo, GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou, and SBAS on multiple frequency bands.
Commsignia is the market’s most dynamic V2X company thanks to its cutting-edge technology and market ready portfolio. Commsignia specializes in Connected Car / V2X “Safer on the Road” software and hardware products compatible with IEEE 802.11p standards and DSRC and future Cellular V2X (C-V2X) / 5G technologies. Commsignia is helping to build the next generation autonomous car and smart mobility ecosystem that will make driving safer whilst reducing congestion and lowering emissions. Commsignia supplies best-in-class V2X (Car2X) Communication Software, hybrid V2X /ADAS Applications with robust PKI and SCMS security, a V2X SDK as well as OnBoard (OBU) and Roadside Units (RSU) for connected car and Smart City deployments.
BASELABS provides data fusion results for advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and highly automated driving (HAD) to OEMs, Tier1s, Tier2s and service providers. Our software framework and engineering services address both prototyping and series development of data fusion software to combine the data from all automotive sensors like radar, camera and lidar using object fusion, grid fusion and lane fusion algorithms. The resulting unified environment model enables driving functions like AEB, ACC, lane keeping and piloted driving in highway and urban scenarios. BASELABS has a team size of 50+ people. The company is in shared ownership of the four founders and Vector Informatik GmbH. This makes BASELABS strategically independent from any OEM or Tier 1 in the market.