Future Mobility | Eindhoven University of Technology | Department of Industrial Design. 2017-2021. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

External Communication in Autonomous Driving

The transition toward autonomous driving is one of the main developments within
the automotive branch. Although current technology offers the opportunity to make
cars drive autonomously, safety and regulations do not allow this ‘yet’. The main
focus of this project is to develop a suitable solution for issues caused by novelties of
autonomous driving.

Our personal vision related to this project assumes that there will be a smooth
transition period from ‘traditional driving’ to ‘autonomous driving’. Our goal
was to increase trust in autonomous cars, by developing a system that is able to
communicate the intentions of the car towards the environment.

Three iterations each including research, testing and prototyping, resulted in a final
concept. This concept is based on the principle ‘Do you see me seeing you’. By using
indicators on the outside of the autonomous vehicle traditional road users can be
informed if they are registered by the vehicle or not.

For Example; when you want to cross the street and a car is approaching you will
make eye contact with the driver of the vehicle. In the future the driver will most
likely be occupied with other activities. As a result of that it most likely that there is
no eye contact anymore.

To communicate that the car has noticed you, and it is safe to proceed your movement,
we developed a concept containing a LED-strip surrounding the entire body of the
car. The strip makes use of technology that is able to recognize other road users, and
displays a dot right in the position where the person is at that moment. The dot also
follows the person when he passes the car. It is literally a reflection of yourself on the
car body.

The concrete outcome of the project is a high end 3D printed scale model, equipped
with the developed concept. The model envisions how concept could be e integrated
within modern day cars in a relative short period of time.

A M1.2 project by: Thijs Sjoerdsma & Martijn Bohnen