In November 2005, the U.S. Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) entered into a cooperative research agreement with a private consortium led by the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI) to build and field test an integrated vehicle-based safety system designed to prevent rear-end, lane change and run-off-road crashes. The prototype vehicles being developed will provide forward collision warning (FCW), lane departure warning (LDW), lane change warning (LCW), and curve speed warning (CSW) functions:
- FCW alerts drivers when they are in danger of striking the rear of the vehicle in front of them traveling in the same direction.
- The LDW function provides alerts to drivers when a lateral drift toward or over lane edges is sensed without a turn signal indication.
- LCW will increase a driver's situational awareness of vehicles in close proximity traveling in adjacent lanes in the same direction.
- The CSW function warns drivers when they are traveling too fast for an upcoming curve.
The integrated safety system for the light vehicle platform includes the FCW, LDW, LCW and CSW functions, while the heavy commercial truck platform includes the FCW, LDW, and LCW functions only.
During the first two years of the program, the industry team designed, built, and conducted tests to verify the prototype systems on passenger cars and heavy trucks. The prototype vehicles underwent a series of closed-course track tests aimed at ensuring that the integrated system met the performance requirements and was safe for use by unescorted volunteer drivers during the field operational test, which is planned for Phase II. Approval to proceed with Phase II of the Program was granted on April 8, 2008.
The heavy truck field test was conducted between February 2009 and December 2009, while the light vehicle field test began in April 2009 and was completed by May 2010. Approximately 175,000 miles of driving data was collected, with 53,000 miles of the total under baseline driving conditions and 123,000 miles with the integrated system enabled.
Analysis of the data is now complete and all final reports and program summaries have been completed and are posted to this Web page (see Program Documentation page).