 Not knowing the configuration of the road ahead could become a thing of the past

is significantly beyond the 1-2m/s2 most people would deem to be comfortable. Conversely, a car might accelerate to ensure it’s driving the regulation speed limit, but – as many British drivers would attest – that may be uncomfortable when on a road that is narrow, a tight bend or flanked by high hedgerows. Finally, there are lane changes to think

of. For a vehicle wishing to overtake, doing so effectively requires it to know of cur- rent and upcoming lane configurations. In a scenario where an automated truck on a motorway wishes to overtake, it must be able to answer several questions: is there another lane that it could move into? Are there legal restrictions preventing it from overtaking or driving in the other lane? Is the lane wide enough? Is the stretch of road needed to complete the manoeuvre long enough so that the truck can pass before the lane configuration changes? Is there a steep hill coming up soon that would make the manoeuvre difficult?

THE LONG VIEW In all of these examples, it helps to have a longer view of the road ahead. Not know- ing the terrain, lane configuration or the


“With vehicles soon able to use next-generation machine- readable mapping like this, we may look back on 2017 as a watershed year for digital mapping and location services”

live traffic situation could make for a poor driving experience. It could also erode trust in the vehicle’s abilities, which would be a source of major concern when trust issues already exist with respect to automation: in a recent survey by HERE, less than a fifth of respondents expressed with certainty that they would use self-driving cars, although, encouragingly, drivers who owned a car with at least one ADAS application were more open to the prospect. With Electronic Horizon, automakers

have an opportunity to deploy software that helps nurture that trust – in both the cars of today and the automated cars of the future. The software is the first in the market to support the ADASIS version 3

specification. In practice, this means that the car will also be able to use it to draw on so-called high definition (HD) map- ping, which depicts the world dynamically and three-dimensionally down to a preci- sion level of 20 centimetres – ideal for the localization and strategy planning of an automated car. This could be very useful in an industry with long product cycles, giv- ing the ability for the automaker to switch on a HD mapping service like HERE’s HD Live Map whenever ready. With vehicles soon able to use next-

generation machine-readable mapping like this, we may look back on 2017 as a watershed year for digital mapping and location services. When maps were first embedded in the BMW E38 more than 20 years ago, they were seen as a useful companion for the driver. In 2017, they’re emerging as an indispensable element of the vehicle and the driving experience, linking both to the cloud and the brains of the car to help guide people to their desti- nation safely and comfortably.

Alex Mangan is Head of Automotive Product Marketing at HERE

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