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Mitsubishi and Here team on lane hazard warning

By Simon Warburton | 20 May 2019

Mitsubishi Electric and Here Technologies have successfully piloted a system enabling vehicles to automatically warn others about upcoming road hazards with lane-level precision.

At the end of March, the two companies successfully completed field tests of the technology, known as Lane Hazard Warning, in California. This followed a trial in Ibaraki Prefecture in Japan last winter.

The companies now intend to make the technology available broadly to automakers for them to test in their vehicles.

Lane Hazard Warning enables an event detected by a vehicle's sensors; such as a disabled or slow car, a slippery road, debris or a pothole, to be precisely localised to a specific lane and this information to be transmitted in real-time via the cloud to other vehicles approaching the same area.

"When something unusual happens on the road ahead drivers often have very little time to react and that can put them and their passengers at risk," said Mitsubishi Electric group president of Automotive Equipment, Horoshi Onishi.

"Together with Here Technologies, we've developed a new system designed to give drivers a few valuable extra seconds or minutes to prepare for a potential danger on the road ahead, such as by switching lanes or simply driving with greater caution."

Lane Hazard Warning uses a vehicle's sensors together with HD Locator, Mitsubishi Electric's precise centimetre-level positioning technology and the Here Open Location Platform, the collaborative big location data platform.

As part of their collaboration, the companies are also evaluating the application of technology in automated updates of maps for automated vehicles using the cloud as well as in a service which alerts cities and road maintenance authorities to road surface degradation.

"Here Technologies and Mitsubishi Electric are showing how your car can learn from the experiences of other cars on the road to make for a much safer driving experience," said Here Technologies SVP and head of Applications and Services, Jørgen Behrens,

"We believe fast, accurate and targeted hazard alerts will be a critical part of the data infrastructure required for automated driving and smart city services. We look forward to seeing this technology in the market."