Drones support validation of automated driving functions

October 07, 2019 //By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Drones support validation of automated driving functions
Drones can play an important role in the development of technologies for automated driving. The development service provider fka (Aachen, Germany) uses drones to generate naturalistic traffic data. This data can be used to secure development processes.

For the development and validation of automated driving functions, fka has created a database with the help of which relevant traffic scenarios can be made available to customers from the automotive industry. For this purpose, data from various sources such as accident databases, simulations, data from vehicles equipped with sensors - and now also drones - are first harmonized and then further processed with a uniform process chain.

Today's traffic data acquisition by vehicles equipped with sensors has some disadvantages. The vehicle can only ever record the concrete situation in the immediate vicinity. As a result, thousands of kilometres are required to record a relevant number of different traffic situations.

In addition, research vehicles equipped with conspicuous sensors influence the behaviour of other road users and thus the quality of the data. Drones avoid these typical limitations of established traffic data acquisition methods and can record thousands of kilometers of vehicle data in a very short time.

The trajectory of each vehicle, including vehicle type, size and maneuver, is automatically extracted from the data collected. By using modern algorithms, the positioning error is typically less than ten centimeters. In addition to the safety validation of highly automated vehicles, the data sets are also used for many other tasks such as the analysis of traffic patterns or the parameterization of driver models.

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