One thousand trucks and buses are being used in Finland to detect slippery road conditions in real time which can then be shared with other road users to improve road safety.
The two-year project by EEE Innovations, Finnish Transport Agency and Trafi, makes use of a black ice detector which was launched last year.
Real-time slipperiness data is considered a prerequisite for automatic driving to become more common in winter conditions in a larger scale. The solution tested in the project could provide a solution to this problem, says Eetu Pilli-Sihvola of Trafi.
The patented technology is initially offered for heavy traffic, but the invention can be applied for private vehicles as well in the future.
“We offer the slipperiness data collected by the vehicles to be used by all parties in the project. In addition to that, also other information can be derived from the vehicles through the system, such as location and temperature data and information on sudden braking situations,” said Jarmo Leino of EEE Innovations, the company that developed the service.
The software can also guide drivers to drive more economically. In addition to the driver of the vehicle, a warning of slipperiness detected can be forwarded in real time to the whole fleet and other operators, for example through map applications. The data can be used for other purposes as well, such as targeting road maintenance measures.