Smarter and smarter cars



What if cars could "read" the yellow line and road markings to detect imperfections such as potholes or pavements under repair, and thus warn other vehicles to choose a better route? "It's not fiction", says Jihene Rezgui, a professor and researcher at Collège de Maisonneuve, whose work aims to improve communication between different road elements.

Many are equipped with sensors that warn us of the presence of a nearby obstacle or help us parallel park without touching the steering wheel.

Our vehicles are getting smarter and smarter. Many are equipped with sensors that warn us of the presence of a nearby obstacle or help us parallel park without touching the steering wheel. Some luxury models are also equipped with dedicated short-range communications (DSRC). This fast and secure wireless technology, designed specifically for intelligent transport systems, allows vehicles to communicate with each other and with the road infrastructure to improve road safety.

This collaborative mode of communication, which takes place without human intervention, integrates applications that make use of the data collected by sensors. However, the system is not optimal: the quality and speed of processing this large amount of data must be improved if, for example, a collision is to be avoided at the very last moment.

Jihene Rezgui is in fact working with college students and partners from Université de Sherbrooke and Université de Montréal on algorithms that will, among other things, help minimize network interference in order to process data in 20 milliseconds!

The team has also been working on the management of intelligent traffic lights. Jihene Rezgui believes that a vehicle should not have to wait at an intersection when there is no one in the other direction. The researchers have developed algorithms that "talk" to traffic lights, whose cameras and sensors record traffic density and waiting times.

According to the engineer, the improved DSRC technology will be an integral part of all cars by 2024.