Cadillac drivers need not fear those traffic lights anymore. They can let their cars "chat" with the traffic lights to avoid unwittingly running the red light.
The technology, once perfected, will allow traffic lights to tell a car if it is going too fast and in danger of running the red light. It will trigger a warning that will inform the driver of the possibility of committing a traffic violation or worse getting into an accident. It will also prevent the driver from slamming on his breaks when the light suddenly turns yellow. If the warning appears, the driver should know whether he or she should slow down or speed up a little.
Cadillac is already employing a vehicle-to-vehicle communication system in its CTS luxury car, the first of its kind. The V2V in the sedan allows it to communicate with other V2V-equipped Cadillac CTS cars. The car manufacturer is now in the process of developing a system that allows a vehicle to communicate with an infrastructure. The vehicle-to-infrastructure or V2I system will allows the Cadillacs to receive messages from local infrastructures such as traffic lights.
Mashable reported that the V2I system sends data gathered by the traffic signals to the demo Cadillac cars. The system utilizes the Dedicated Short-Range Communications (DSRC) protocol which tells the incoming Cadillac CTS equipped with the V2I system that the light is about to turn red. Once the data was received, the system automatically alerts the driver and advises if the speed of the Cadillac is too fast or too slow. After which, the driver can make the necessary adjustments.
Concerns over privacy are already being addressed by Cadillac. According to the car company, the system will not identify the vehicle in any way. It also uses an encryption that will prevent interference of the wireless signals.
According to CNET, the technology has been successfully tested using a couple of traffic lights in Michigan, just outside GM's Warren Technical Center to be more accurate. The experiment was conducted with the help of the Macomb County Department of Roads and the Michigan Department of Transportation.
Cadillac is not the only car company working on allowing their cars to "talk" to traffic lights. Audi, for one, is developing its Traffic Light Information System which will mainly inform the driver if the light will turn green anytime soon.