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DEKOR-X paves the way for autonomous test drives: installation at test intersection completed

PRESS RELEASE


Kronach, 19.03.2024 – The research and development project "DEKOR-X (Dezentraler Kommunikationsraum Kreuzung, ENG: Decentralised Communication at Junctions)" has reached an important milestone. In March, the setup of the public test junction at B173 / Kulmbacher Straße in Kronach was successfully completed. This paves the way for testing decentralized vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communication with test vehicles.  

 

Decentralized communication to make intersections safer for autonomous vehicles 

For autonomous driving to become a reality in everyday life, autonomous vehicles must be able to independently master every traffic situation in the future. The "DEKOR-X (Decentralised Communication at Junctions)" research and development project is tackling a particularly complex traffic situation for autonomous vehicles: Busy inner-city intersections. 

 

DEKOR-X pursues the approach of decentralized communication both between vehicles and between vehicles and environmental sensors. Intelligent, automated vehicles exchange information that they receive from their surroundings via their sensors directly with each other. This enables them to collect information on objects that are blocked by the vehicle in front or by buildings, for example. This extended field of vision increases the safety of all road users. And without the need for expensive additional installations at every junction. 

 

On the road to decentralized communication, however, this smart infrastructure is still needed to train the long-term models developed in the project and validate them in real-life situations. With the approval of the Bamberg State Building Authority, the infrastructure sensors have now been installed at the junction B173 / Kulmbacher Straße in Kronach, setting the stage for the next steps in the project.

 

"This installation is part of the network that will exist in every city in the future and will enable autonomous driving. Vehicles and infrastructure are in constant communication to make traffic safer, more sustainable and more efficient. This puts Kronach not only at the cutting edge of technology, but also at the forefront of research," explains Lucila Patino Studencki, Professor of V2X Technologies at the Faculty of Mechanical and Automotive Engineering at Coburg University of Applied Sciences, who coordinated the installation at the intersection.

 

The setup test intersection is also a decisive step for consortium leader Valeo. Valeo has already been carrying out intensive research and development work in the field of automated driving at the Kronach site for years with projects such as the self-driving shuttles ("Shuttle-Modellregion Oberfranken / SMO"), the autonomous driving course, the 5G Campus network and L4 test tracks in Kronach: "Assembling the test intersection is another milestone for us. Communication between vehicles and infrastructure is particularly important for advances in ADAS systems in terms of functionality and safety.  Valeo already set up a connectivity team in Kronach last year, for which this test intersection is of great value. In future, the sensor technology should make a significant contribution to increasing the safety of all road users," explains Jörg Schrepfer, Valeo site manager in Kronach.

  

Innovative sensor technology in use

DEKOR-X uses the latest sensor and camera technology. Consortium leader Valeo provided its latest generation of laser scanners for installation at the test intersection. 

 

Coburg University of Applied Sciences installed lidar sensors and cameras as well as a weather station to investigate traffic situations under different weather conditions.

 

Project partner Continental Automotive Technologies GmbH is deploying the new generation of radar from Continental. 

 

"Continental Automotive Technologies GmbH has reached an important milestone in the DEKOR-X project.  The intersection setup with sensors, radar systems and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication (V2X) went smoothly. This digital intersection is the basis for test drives in real road traffic.  The test drives will validate the decentralized communication between vehicles and sensors," says Khatera Bamyani, Project Manager at Continental Automotive Technologies GmbH, explaining the relevance of the current setup of the test intersection for the success of DEKOR-X.

 

Now that this public intersection has been equipped with infrastructure sensors, the next project phase of the project can begin. The project partners will test three different intersection scenarios with their test vehicles on the road and thus gradually train and evaluate the learning systems and models that have been developed in the project.



About DEKOR-X

The project DEKOR-X is part of the German Association of the Automotive Industry’s flagship initiative on autonomous and connected driving and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action is providing around EUR 7.5 million of funding over a period of three years.

 

The consortium consists of the consortium leader Valeo, Continental Automotive GmbH, DENSO ADAS Engineering Services GmbH, Coburg University of Applied Sciences and Chemnitz University of Technology.

 

For more information on this project, please contact the project coordination team by emailing projektbuero.dekor-x@nuts.one or andreas.vom-bruch@valeo.com.

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