Cooperative Automated Transportation (CAT)

Cooperative Automated Transportation

Roadway safety in a cooperative automated world

Highway automation is not years away, or even days away. It’s here now, causing a number of state transportation agencies to react with initiatives related to preparing and supporting Connected Automated Vehicles (CAVs) on U.S. roadways.

Connected and Automated Vehicles (CAVs)

Cooperative Automated Transportation (CAT) deals with CAVs, which are vehicles capable of driving on their own with limited or no human involvement in navigation and control. Per the definition adopted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are six levels of automation (Levels 0-2: driver assistance and Levels 3-5: HAV), each of which requires its own specification and marketplace considerations.

Vehicle-to-Everything (V2X) and Connected and Automated Vehicles (CAVs)

For traffic safety, vehicle-to-everything communications is the wireless exchange of critical safety and operational data between vehicles and anything else. The "X" could be roadway infrastructure, other vehicles, roadway workers or other safety and communication devices. ATSSA members are at the forefront of these technologies, and are working with stakeholders across new industries to see these innovations come to life.

Sensor Technology

CAVs rely on three main groups of sensors: camera, radar, and Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR). The camera sensors capture moving objects and the outlines of roadway devices to get speed and distance data. Short- and long-range radar sensors work to detect traffic from the front and the back of CAVs. LIDAR systems produce three-dimensional images of both moving and stationary objects.

For more information about ATSSA’s efforts on CAT and CAV’s and their interaction with our member products check out the resources below.


ATSSA joins Safety Spectrum Coalition
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ATSSA joins Safety Spectrum Coalition

(Fredericksburg, Va.) – The American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA) has joined the Safety Spectrum Coalition to support advanced Dedicated Short Range Communications (DSRC) technologies supported by the 5.9 GHz safety spectrum band in vehicles. That means a much safer environment for all road users who utilize autonomous “connected” vehicles for their daily transportation needs. The new partnership also offers ATSSA members unique new opportunities to further improve the roadway infrastructure to help the advancement of Highly Autonomous Vehicles (HAV).

According to the Safety Spectrum Coalition’s website, technology exists that can stop crashes before they happen. “Connected cars will be able to talk to each other like your cell phone, TV, and other wireless devices, and warn you about things you can't see to make driving safer, increase fuel economy, and ease traffic congestion. But this connected car technology needs the Safety Spectrum to operate. The FCC is considering a change in their rules that could jeopardize the Safety Spectrum. Decisions over sharing the Safety Spectrum should be driven first and foremost by public safety,” the website reports.

“ATSSA’s number one priority is advancing roadway safety, and our partnership with the Safety Spectrum Coalition will enable us to expand on that priority by meeting the many safety demands of those road users who rely on HAV’s of all types to meet their daily transportation needs,” said ATSSA Chair Debra Ricker. “We look forward to bringing ATSSA member innovation, products and technologies to the table to help meet the many demands of autonomous vehicles and their users, as they travel our nation’s roadways.”

John Bozzella, president and CEO of Global Automakers said, “The Safety Spectrum Coalition is excited to welcome ATSSA as a partner in our efforts to deliver significant lifesaving benefits through connected car technology. ATSSA's strong reputation for advancing roadway safety will further strengthen our Coalition’s advocacy efforts.”

Since 1969, ATSSA has represented the roadway safety industry with effective legislative advocacy and far-reaching member partnerships. The association also leads the nation in work zone safety training and education for roadway workers. ATSSA members manufacture and install roadway safety features – including signs, pavement markings, temporary traffic control devices, guardrail, worker safety apparel and many other innovative roadway safety products.

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