A new technique and method for classifying and describing various road conditions has been developed by researchers in the Centre of expertise CASTT at Luleå University of Technology. Using technology in the form of sensors and different classification methods,
developed by researchers, can increase the road safety
- The most dangerous road conditions are the ones that are difficult for the driver to detect and which arise suddenly on the road. A sensor that can classify the road conditions could improve road safety significantly, says Johan Casselgren whose research takes place within the CASTT (Centre for Automotive Systems, Technologies and Testing) at Luleå University with research in close collaboration with the automotive testing industry.
Statistics show that many accidents with severe output can be related to the slippery conditions. The research is to describe the various road conditions such as dry asphalt and asphalt covered with water, ice and snow. To give an idea of the traction needed, in addition to the base, estimates of parameters such as how uneven and deep the coating is. That kind of subjects the researchers have examined both in the laboratory and on real roads with the help of a model for light propagation that can make such assessments. In order to classify different conditions the researchers used a sensor called Road-eye, which consists of three light sources of different wavelengths and a detector that can measure the return of the reflected light.
- Depending on how the surface has been absorbed, scattered and polarized the light, it is possible to classify the different road conditions, says Johan Casselgren.
The information obtained by using the Road eye sensor and the methods that researchers have developed the system can e.g. be used in a vehicle to inform the driver and the diffrent systems in the vehicle. Information can also be used to identify roads in need of anti-slip control.