Understanding the Levels of Automation for Connected and Automated Vehicles

Over the past decade, autonomous vehicle technology has advanced in tremendous ways. Today, cars are capable of performing intuitive tasks that would have been unthinkable just 10 years ago. Today, autonomous vehicles are put into one of five classifications defining the level of autonomy with which the vehicles operate.

If you operate a construction site or other sensitive traffic area, including parking lots, you should have a thorough understanding of the differing levels of autonomy and how they affect safety on your site. Be sure to consult with an expert specializing in traffic management technology in Vermont to learn more about how autonomous vehicles may impact safety on your site.

For practical purposes, “level zero” on the scale of vehicular autonomy is a traditional, old-fashioned car: it performs no driving tasks of its own accord. Here are the five different levels of autonomy found in cars today:

  • Level one: Cars on the first level vehicular autonomy feature an advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) that can perform simple tasks. The ADAS system may help steer or accelerate or decelerate in a very limited capacity.
  • Level two: Level two cars feature an ADAS that is capable of performing more than one task at once. Cars equipped with level two autonomous technology still require the driver’s full attention.
  • Level three: Cars with level three autonomous technology feature an ADAS capable of completely controlling the vehicle for limited amounts of time. Drivers should be ready to take control of the vehicle at all times.
  • Level four: Level four cars are equipped with sensors and communicative devices that monitor the roadway, as well as a fully functioning ADAS. These cars are effectively “self-driving.”
  • Level five: In level five vehicles, there are no drivers—the vehicle is completely responsible for operating itself.

Vehicular connection

Autonomous vehicles are now including an increasing amount of connection to their users, other cars and infrastructure.

Here are just some of the types of vehicular connections modern cars may be equipped with:

  • V2I: Vehicle to infrastructure (V2I) communication allows autonomous vehicles to send and receive signals from permanent pieces of infrastructure, including toll checkers, stoplights and bridges.
  • V2V: One of the most significant recent technological advances allows for vehicle to vehicle (V2V) communication. V2V technology helps prevent collisions and makes traffic flow more manageable and consistent.
  • V2C: Vehicle to cloud (V2C) communication allows vehicles and their users to connect to the outside world. V2C technology can help drivers avoid heavy traffic by downloading ongoing reports, or respond more effectively to weather events.
  • V2X: Vehicle to everything (V2X) is aspirational technology currently under development. It synthesizes all of the different current types of vehicular communication and augments them, increasing the effectiveness of vehicular autonomy.

Worksafe Traffic Control Industries is the most trusted provider of traffic management technology in Vermont. You can count on us to provide you with a wide range of state-of-the-art safety solutions. We are proud of our ability to provide each and every one of our clients with high-quality, specialized safety solutions that meet their individualized needs. Call one of our friendly and knowledgeable professionals today to learn more about our extensive range of product offerings.

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