Space to Earth: the technology that will enable Ford to their cars remain connected even in tunnels

Ford just give us more details about a promising project, which culminated in a striking experiment in which astronauts on the International Space Station with a joystick handled a robot that was on Earth , in really difficult conditions (low signal, high latency, interference, etc.). The next step will remotely manipulate a group of robots capable of assembling scientific equipment and satellites. This technology can be really important in the near or even distant future, see the colonization of the Moon, or Mars. But raising a closer stage in time, and easy to understand, how can you help this technology to the “connected car”? how facilitate our cars are permanently connected, even in places where no no mobile phone signal or Wi-Fi, such as a tunnel?

The same technology used in space can be harnessed on Earth to ensure permanent connection of our cars, with each other and with the cloud, using any connection to us, on different channels.

The project conducted by Ford Motor Company and the Technical University of St. Petersburg, intends to work with a communication infrastructure that ensures high reliability . An infrastructure that does not require necessarily a connection point on each road, every 100 meters.

This trust in multi-protocol connections , which take the same principles used in the controlled from the International Space Station robot, so your car can always communicate in all circumstances with the “cloud”. And the “cloud” is also able to connect to your car.


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Ford is designing a system to secure connection even in difficult conditions such as a tunnel several kilometers.

This multi-protocol connections bailed take advantage of the 3G and 4G mobile connections, and points allowed Wi-Fi connection. Note that the development of the “connected car” it will necessarily accompanied by a communications infrastructure on the roads, what we call Vehicle-to-Infrastructure . A light panel on a highway, traffic lights, or a lamppost, could become perfectly – and if you think about it, without an exorbitant cost -. In this network nodes connected to the car

But even confident that this technology will implanted in our roads, they would remain blind spots, which is not always easy, or inexpensive, create a new connection node, such as a tunnel. For this, the multichannel technology relies on what we call the vehicle-to-vehicle , the direct connection between connected cars. So in an area with no signal, eg when entering a tunnel, we can stay connected using as nodes to those vehicles that we passed, which may end up entering the tunnel or go out of it before us.

Why is it so important that technology? The example of the tunnel is very handy, because of the complexity that provides for a communications network and the dangers that can haunt a tunnel. Ford gives an example as a sheet of ice, or an oil spill that causes the asphalt slide. Another incident that comes to mind is that of a fire truck. Car priority would be connected to the cloud communicate the impact and that it warned other drivers. To understand the importance of this technology, and how useful it can be to prevent serious accidents in the future, just remember the story of the crash of the Mont Blanc tunnel, the life of 38 people (see Wikipedia) claimed in 1999.

Source: Ford
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