Driverless cars run by Raspberry Pi

Could the future of driverless cars be shaped by Raspberry Pi? For undergraduate researchers at the University of Cambridge, the answer is a resounding yes!

Can cars talk to each other?

A fleet of driverless cars working together to keep traffic moving smoothly can improve overall traffic flow by at least 35 percent, researchers have shown. The researchers, from the University of Cambridge, programmed a small fleet of miniature robotic cars to drive on a multi-lane track and observed how the traffic flow changed when one of the cars stopped.

So long, traffic!

By using Raspberry Pis and onboard sensors to program scale-model versions of commercially available cars, undergraduate researchers have built a fleet of driverless cars that ‘talk to each other’. They did this because they are studying how driverless technology can help reduce traffic incidents on our roads.

Cambridge University Driverless cars using Raspberry Pi

The researchers investigated how a car stalled on a multi-lane track affects the buildup of traffic, and how communication between driverless cars can prevent these buildups.

Cambridge University Driverless cars using Raspberry Pi

When the cars acted independently of each other, a stalled car caused other vehicles in the same lane to slow or stop in order to merge into the adjacent lane. This soon led to queues forming along the track. But when the cars communicated via Raspberry Pis, they could tell each other about obstacles on the track, and this allowed cars to shift lanes with the cooperation of other road users.

The researchers recently presented their paper on the subject at the International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2019) in Montréal, Canada. You can find links to their results, plus more information, on the University of Cambridge blog.

10 comments

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I love this, much nicer and more fun to look at than computer animations. Only a bit more complicated :)

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If drivers were more cooperative rather than combative, then total throughput of the roads would also be much improved.

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They call that anticipation. That is why and how Queue’s develop. Drivers do not look far enough ahead and do not know their speed in relation to the rest of the flow.

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At first I thought that the little suction cup dart ‘things’ on the hood and roof were some kind of aerial, but on further thought I have concluded they must just be used for identification when filming.

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This research indicates that once driverless cars become more common, aggressive human driving may be rewarded as AI systems move out of the way to let you through. Or will AI not always be submissive?

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We’re going to need a new robot road rage law: Headline – “Four Driverless Cars Boxed In A Driver *They* Deemed Aggressive”

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What a fantastic demonstration.

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Ha! I suspect an accident was going to happen before the video was cut.

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The PiHut doesn’t sell 4GB ram. Where can I get 4 gb ram rpi4?

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If you are prepared for the import hit then canakit will send the 4GB Pi4 kit

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