Tullio Cettolin, Strategic Marketing Director,
Micron Automotive Division
Last September, several major car and automo- tive systems manufacturers, including Daim- ler, Nissan, and Tesla, announced plans to
commercially introduce autonomous self-driving
cars by 2020. These manufacturers join a list of companies, like
Toyota and Audi, who have already announced similar development projects.
Self-driving cars are no longer considered just a dream or an
advanced research project (like the famous Google car). What
was once a seemingly far-fetched idea is now moving into
the industrialization phase. This advancement is based on an
integrated suite of technologies being developed for advanced
driver assistance systems (ADAS) and vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V)
and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communication networks.
The evolution of technology and communication has initiated
a major social change: The car is becoming like a second home.
Today, most of us are used to connecting anywhere, anytime via
phone call, email, or Internet applications. In a car — either as a
driver or a passenger — we like to remain connected. Our portable smartphones offer this ability, and we expect the infotain-ment and telematics systems in our cars to do the same.
Unfortunately, with this automotive evolution come safety
hazards. Calling and/or texting while driving can generate driver distractions, which are statistically the most common cause
of car accidents. Road safety regulations in almost all countries
prohibit texting or emailing while driving and only permit
phone calls with hands-free audio systems to mitigate these hazards. However, drivers do not always respect these rules.
Self-driving cars will aim to almost completely remove human
error from the driving equation. In the near-future, we will be
sitting comfortably reading the news, calling, emailing, partic-
ipating in conference calls, and using cloud applications while
our cars autonomously and safely drive us home. They will do
this without any human intervention, relying only on informa-
tion gathered from the environment — including the road and
other vehicles — and from the smart-road infrastructure. All of
these factors working in conjunction will result in the ultimate
Enabling automotive innovation
Reaching this level of innovation will not be simple. It will
require advanced automotive-grade DRAM and nonvolatile
Flash memory solutions and wider availability of integrated
systems that support driving assistance modules and V2V and
V2I network possibilities.
V2V Communication: By
data regarding position,
speed, and location, V2V
one vehicle to sense the
position of other vehicles and obstacles that may pose a threat,
to calculate the risk, and to issue driver advisories or warnings
or take preemptive actions to avoid accidents.
V2I Communication: V2I communication enables the wireless
exchange of critical safety and operational data between vehicles and highway infrastructure, transforming road networks
into smart infrastructures. V2I is primarily intended to avoid/
mitigate vehicle crashes, but it also enables a wide range of
other safety, mobility, and environmental benefits. V2I incorporates algorithms that use data exchanged between vehicles and
infrastructure elements to calculate high-risk situations in advance, resulting in driver alerts and warnings through specific
The evolution of technology and
communication has initiated a
major social change: The car is
becoming like a second home.