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VisLab's adventure on the Silk road: 13 000 km Trip With No Driver. PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 31 May 2010
VisLab is going to participate to the World Expo at Shanghai with a project, partially funded by ERC - European Research Council- that will show that it is possible, although in a prototype version, to move goods between two continents with non-polluting vehicles powered by green energy and with virtually no human intervention. Some goods will be packed in Rome, some collected throughout the trip, and finally taken to Shanghai on vehicles with no driver for the first time in history .

VisLab will be responsible for vehicle technology and automation issues, while Overland will be responsible for logistics and media events.
The aim is to demonstrate, through an extensive and impressive test , that the current technology is mature enough for the deployment of non-polluting and no-oil based autonomous vehicles in real conditions. Moreover the Municipality of Rome, an active player in this project, is planning to exploit these vehicles downtown to deliver goods to shops, collect trash, and arrange sustainable mobility in the last mile.

The vehicles
Two Piaggio electric vehicles will perform a 13,000 km trip mainly powered by solar energy, with no driver; two backup vehicles will be part of the trip as well. As a support, 4 Overland trucks will follow the expedition to provide a mechanic shop, storage, and accommodation; finally two additional trucks will be used for media coverage and will be equipped for live satellite broadcasting.
The first vehicle will drive autonomously in selected sections of the trip and will conduct experimental tests on sensing, decision, and control subsystems, and will continuously collect data. Although limited, human interventions will be needed to define the route and intervene in critical situations.
- The second vehicle will automatically follow the route defined by the preceding vehicle, requiring no human intervention (100% autonomous). This will be regarded as a readily exploitable vehicle, able to move on predefined routes; at the end of the trip, its technology will be transferred to a set of vehicles to move in the inner part of Rome in the close future.

In case the first vehicle is in line of sight,

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Editorial PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 24 May 2010
As most of you know, two weeks ago DVN organised a workshop with almost all European car makers and tier-1 lighting suppliers. Some DVN Gold members have regretted their absence from the intensive event, so I am glad to present today a detailed report of this workshop.
You will discover in this report the lectures presented by Dr Huhn (Audi), Benoist Fleury (Valeo), Dr Schäfer (Philips), Dr Dorissen Hella,Lex Krzyzanoswki (LSS) and Dr Hamm (AL). You'll also find coverage of the three round table discussions on Xenon, LED and how to sell the advanced headlamps.

At the workshop, divergent opinions were voiced but there was also some consensus amongst the participants. Many questions on timing introduction of LED mass production remain without firm answers.

The four most important challenges are:
LED is the technology of the future…but when?
its introduction timing is not clear:
around five years for one group, more than 10 years for the second group?
Communication is the key point to increase take rate of Xenon then LED.
but how to do a common communication?
What kind of communication: Dealers, Video, Internet?
We have to consider the cost of the LED system with styling constraints.
but price/Timing of LED system is not clear
We have to succeed standardization but how?
on LED chip and module evolution, binning, connection, standardisation, and specifications.

For each subject and each question, you'll find not just coverage, but also comentary.
In spite of the many questions without pat answers, we present a lot of information which will help you to better know the present state of the challenges and benefits of new lighting technologies.

Sincerely yours

DVN General editor

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