Cooperative Intelligent transport systems
One of the most frequent human errors in accident situations is failure to see motorcycles within traffic, either due to the driver’s lack of attention, temporary view obstruction or low conspicuity of the motorcycle. This issue can be addressed by Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS) which provide “digital conspicuity” to surrounding vehicles by warning drivers of oncoming motorcycles.
The motorcycle industry sees vehicle to vehicle (V2V) communication as a technology with a high potential to improve road safety across the EU and to lead to better integration of motorcycles in the transport system.
ACEM members have participated together with relevant national authorities in several road safety campaigns. These campaigns have focused on encouraging drivers to look for motorcyclists on the road. This is particularly important given that a high number of collisions are caused by car drivers noticing very late or even completely overlooking riders. Safety campaigns have also focused on the promotion of voluntary post-license training and of conspicuous and protective gear among riders.
From the Memorandum of Understanding on C-ITS to the Connected Motorcycle Consortium
In March 2014, the motorcycle industry adopted a Memorandum of Understanding on C- ITS. The objective of this MoU was to coordinate the deployment by industry players of safety relevant C-ITS technology on motorcycles in the European market. The Memorandum is an expression of individual and collective commitment of ACEM manufacturing members to realise a shared objective to the benefit of everyone.
In 2015, building on the MoU on C-ITS, motorcycle manufacturers, suppliers, researchers and associations joined forces to create the Connected Motorcycle Consortium (CMC). The main objective of this R&D platform is to define common basic specifications for motorcycle ITS in areas such as: triggering conditions, localisation accuracy, algorithms and communicated data, as well as rider interface and antenna performance.
These are very challenging problems from a technical standpoint. Specific engineering solutions are needed because ITS developed for cars are simply not transferable to motorcycles due to the differences in vehicle and dynamics. Basic specifications for an ITS motorcycle system are what CMC is trying to achieve, by focusing on evaluation, verification and requirements standardisation.
The CMC has made significant progress in this area and breakthrough results have been achieved in motorcycle approach indication, motorcycle approach warning and Day 1 applications. View more on Safety from the CMC.
USE Case scenarios developed by the CMC
The CMC is working on around 30 ‘use cases’ in which connectivity between vehicles would allow the possibility to warn drivers and riders of potentially dangerous situations. The use cases include motorcycle approach indication and warning features which help other vehicle drivers to detect motorcycles. The use cases also include dedicated applications for motorcyclists.
Image source: C2C-CC toolkit
Creating the conditions for market uptake of C-ITS
Certain C-ITS solutions may be suited for some types of models but not for others. Manufacturers implement technical solutions and optional features according to their vehicles’ needs, within a competitive business environment, ensuring that core functions and interoperability are preserved. The industry is also committed to guarantee that safety related C-ITS are interoperable between motorcycles and other vehicles.
C-ITS equipped motorcycles will soon hit the European roads, but in order to ensure market uptake it is essential to complete ongoing standardisation activities, validation and field operational tests. Cooperation with other players, including the automotive sector, infrastructure organisations and public authorities, especially with regard to investments in infrastructure and the deployment of a clear legal framework.
Cooperating with stakeholders in the field of C-ITS
ACEM works with stakeholders to ensure the successful deployment of C-ITS solutions in many ways. The industry actively participated in the European Platform for the Deployment of C-ITS, as well as in the newly established Single Platform for open road testing and pre-deployment of cooperative, connected, automated and autonomous mobility (CCAM) to make sure that motorcycles are considered in the pre-deployment scenarios.
“ACEM works with stakeholders to ensure the successful deployment of C-ITS solutions”
Moreover, ACEM manufacturers have worked together with the car industry on a number of research projects aimed at developing V2V and V2I applications, such as the FP6 project Safespot, the CAR 2 CAR Communication Consortium, the SIM-TD and the Drive C2X projects.
Some ACEM members took part in demonstrations and test operational fields, such as 5GAA C-V2X Workshop and Demonstration Paris 2018, the Large Vehicle Alert System demonstration with CLAAS and “Automobile - Motorcycle” demo communication via C-V2X technology, at the last ITS World Congress.
Towards an eCall system for motorcycles
As of 31 March 2018, all new models of cars and light commercial vehicles (M1 and N1 categories) must be equipped with 112 based eCall systems, emergency call devices that automatically alert rescue services in case of a car crash. eCall systems represent an opportunity to increase safety also for motorcyclists, that is why the industry is actively working to prepare the ground for its future deployment.
Between 2014 and 2017, some OEMs participated in the European project I_HeERO, to investigate how an eCall system for motorcycles would work. The I_HeERO project concluded that an eCall for two- and three-wheeled vehicles significantly differs from the one used in passenger cars. The project also defined the minimum requirements for a motorcycle-specific eCall system, embedded in the vehicle.
The need for adequate and motorcycle-specific standardisation
On the basis of I_HeERO project recommendations, the industry worked together with public authorities to adapt the existing CEN standards. As a result, CEN/TS 17249-5 (“eCall for UNECE Category L1 and L3 powered two-wheeled vehicles”) and the CEN/TS 17249-6 (“eCall for UNECE Category L2, L4, L5, L6 and L7 tricycles and quadricycles”) were published in 2018.
The current CEN technical specifications for eCall devices for motorcycles are now being assessed within the framework of the sAFE project, sub-activity 3.5. This EU-funded initiative brings together industry players and Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs) to carry out real tests of the two CEN technical specifications mentioned above. At the end of the project, the consortium members will make concrete proposals to improve the current standards.
The sAFE project runs between January 2019 and December 2020. The project partners are BMW Motorrad, KTM, Piaggio, Yamaha, Kawasaki (full partners); and BRP, Harley-Davidson, Honda, Suzuki, Triumph, and ACEM (associated partners).
Ensuring that ADAS and future automated cars are safe for all road users
Cars equipped with ADAS (advanced driver assistance systems) are able to detect larger objects, with a defined or standardised shape, such as cars, trucks and traffic signs. However, the detection of smaller dynamic objects such as motorcycles still presents challenges to sensors and algorithms, just as it presents challenges to human perception.
Therefore, automated systems should significantly improve the detection rate of motorcycles. Statements such as, “the system may not detect small vehicles like motorcycles”, that can be found nowadays in some driver handbooks, are simply not acceptable from a safety point of view.
Vehicles of automation level 3, expected to be introduced in the near future, will have to be able to recognise the complex manoeuvres commonly undertaken by motorcycles in ordinary traffic (e.g. lane utilisation, lean for cornering, lane splitting and weaving in traffic, etc.). Regardless of their degree of automation, passenger cars and other vehicles must be able to recognise motorcycles and their inherent complex manoeuvres and react accordingly.
The motorcycle industry calls on policy makers to address this safety issue as a matter of urgency. Advanced drivers’ assistance systems and future automated cars must be able to identify and react to motorcycles in a safe manner.
Moreover, both the car and motorcycle industries must learn from each other and continue to cooperate in order to increase safety for all road users. A good example of this cooperation is the MUSE project, implemented in 2019 by UTAC-CERAM. ACEM was involved in this initiative which defined specifications that a target must meet to be considered representative of motorcycles. The project also developed testing tools for the evaluation of the sensors’ performance and testing protocols.