There are several reasons why DRIVE C2X is based on the pan-European architecture for cooperative driving systems:
- First, there is a need for a European-wide integrated approach to large-scale user tests of cooperative systems, to achieve testing methodologies, technologies and applications that are compatible and comparable in the different test sites and to foster the market introduction of interoperable systems and applications functioning across borders.
- Secondly, DRIVE C2X brings together ongoing national activities and ensures the compatibility of emerging systems with the architecture that has been defined by COMeSafety, extended in PRE-DRIVE C2X and set as basis for the ongoing standardization in ETSI TC ITS.
- Additionally, the purpose of DRIVE C2X is to connect the selected national test sites into a large European testing platform. This will guarantee the future interoperability of all mobility services and functions that will be deployed all over Europe.
- Finally, the interoperability will be ensured for all vehicle brands, for all road operators and traffic control centres and for all service providers across Europe.
The key components tested in DRIVE C2X include three major aspects:
The DRIVE C2X Vehicle
It is equipped with radio hardware based on IEEE 802.11p and UMTS for data exchange with other vehicles or with roadside infrastructure. The protocol stack supports ad hoc communication based on GeoNetworking, which enables a rapid and efficient message exchange among vehicles using single-hop and multi-hop communication. The system is connected to the vehicle on-board network (CAN bus) to collect data within the vehicles, so that vehicle data can be exchanged between vehicles. Vehicles also support wireless Internet access, for allowing information to be sent directly to the central component.
The roadside infrastructure (DRIVE C2X roadside unit)
It may be variable message signs or traffic lights. It is fully integrated into the ad hoc communication network, e.g. to send information to the vehicles or to act as relay stations for (multi-hop) communication. Additionally, a roadside infrastructure component may be connected to the Internet, to communicate with the central component.
The central component
It can be for instance a traffic management centre controlling roadside infrastructure, a fleet management centre, etc. Vehicles or roadside infrastructure may send information to the central component, and the latter may, in turn, send information to vehicles or roadside infrastructure.