Intelligent Mobility
© Continental AG

En Route to Intelligent Mobility

Continental and its project partners are demonstrating what intelligent connectivity and communication mean for road traffic in real time: more safety, more comfort, and more efficiency.

Connectivity and real-time communication are the buzzwords on everyone’s lips when the talk turns to the future of mobility. The people at Continental are convinced that if they connect intelligent vehicles to each other and to their environment, they will change the whole face of intelligent mobility.

Award-winning joint project

In a nutshell, digitalization offers many new options for making driving better. From the Continental point of view, the internet actually improves the vehicle because real-time communication among road users with other vehicles and the infrastructure enhances safety, comfort, and efficiency on the roads. One recent example that shows what this means in impressive style is the connected car project “Real-Time Communication via the LTE Mobile Network.” Here, Continental is collaborating with Deutsche Telekom, the Fraunhofer Institute for Embedded Systems and Communication Technologies (ESK), and Nokia Networks on the A9 Digital Test Track, a section of the A9 autobahn between Munich and Nuremberg, to improve road safety and prevent traffic jams by using mobile technology. The joint project won the top award in the “Trafficˮ category in a best-practice competition organized by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy and the Intelligent Networking Initiative.

Vehicles communicate with each other to prevent accidents and traffic jams

This is how it works in practice: Vehicles traveling on the A9 Digital Test Track share hazard information via the Long-Term Evolution (LTE) mobile network. This is accomplished by the kind of technology that could be provided by the upcoming global 5G communication standard. For the first time, communication takes place virtually in real time because the signal latency between two vehicles is reduced to less than 20 milliseconds through the use of plug-in modules – or “cloudletsˮ – installed at the LTE base stations.

Strong partnership pools core competencies

Each of the project partners has their own core competencies that they bring to the table. Together the companies are demonstrating how real-time communication between vehicles and infrastructure could look in the future. The LTE mobile network is operated by Deutsche Telekom. Nokia contributes the Mobile-Edge Computing technology, which, in combination with the position-locating technology developed by Fraunhofer ESK, ensures rapid data transmission. And the vehicle electronics interface developed by Continental allows the implementation of a range of applications, designed to make driving safer and more comfortable.

What lies ahead for vehicle connectivity?

A follow-up project focusing on vehicle connectivity is already envisaged: Continental, Deutsche Telekom, Fraunhofer ESK, Nokia Networks, and, for the first time, the management and IT-consultancy MHP – A Porsche Company – are planning to continue their award-winning partnership. Under the heading of “Road Safety Applications Based on Vehicle Communication via LTE and Mobile-Edge Computing (MEC),ˮ the project partners are aiming to draft, develop, and test further applications on the already established A9 Digital Test Track.

You will find more interesting information on this subject with a number of statements including from Alexander Dobrindt, Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Tim Höttges, CEO of Deutsche Telekom, and Kathrin Buvac, Chief Strategy Officer Nokia Networks, here:

Continental, Deutsche Telekom, Fraunhofer ESK, and Nokia Networks Showcase First Safety Applications on A9 Digital Test Track

Award-Winning Project for Vehicle Connectivity: “Real-Time Communication via the LTE Mobile Network” Wins Best-Practice Competition