Telematics typically is any integrated use of telecommunications and informatics , also known as ICT ( Information and Communications Technology ).
The etymology of telematics , as determined by Automotive Telematics author and academic Dennis Foy, is from the Greek “tele” (‘far away’, especially in relation to the process of producing or recording) and ~Matos (a derivative of the Greek machinari, or contrivance, usually taken in this context to mean ‘of its own accord’). As combined, the term “telematics” describes the process of long-distance transmission of computer-based information. It was first introduced in French by Simon Nora and Alain Minc in L’informatisation de la Société (La Documentation Française, 1978).
The convergence of telecommunications and information processing, the term later evolved to refer to automation in automobiles, such as the invention of the emergency warning system for vehicles. GPS navigation, integrated hands-free cell phones, wireless safety communications and automatic driving assistance systems all are covered under the telematics umbrella.
The science of Tele communications and Infor matics applied in wireless technologies and computational systems. 802.11p , the IEEE standard in the 802.11 family and also referred to as Wireless Access for the Vehicular Environment (WAVE), is the primary standard that addresses and enhances Intelligent Transportation System.
Emad Isaac, CTO of the Morey Corporation defines Telematics as “The potential for collection, aggregation, and storage of pertinent data that can be digested locally, or post-processed remotely.” While it is applicable to the vehicle market, this definition suggests a more universally applicable technology as a superset of M2M (Machine to Machine) connectivity, and as part of an “intelligent network of connected things”.
Practical Applications of Vehicle Telematics
When used in a commercial environment vehicle telematics can potentially be a powerful and valuable tool to improve the efficiency of an organization. Some practical applications of vehicle telematics include:
A project entitled the European Automotive Digital Innovation Studio (EADIS) has been awarded 400,000 Euros from the European commission under its Leonardo programme. EADIS will use a virtual work environment called the Digital Innovation Studio to train and develop professional designers in the automotive industry in the impact and application of ‘vehicle telematics’ so that they may integrate new technologies into future products within the automotive industry.
Leonardo da Vinci is a European Community programme which aims to support national training strategies through funding a range of transnational partnership projects aimed at improving quality, fostering innovation and promoting the European dimension in vocational training. The programme promotes transnational projects based on co-operation between the various players in vocational training – training bodies, vocational schools, universities, businesses, chambers of commerce, etc. – in an effort to increase mobility, to foster innovation and to improve the quality of training. The Leonardo da Vinci programme aims at helping people improve their skills throughout their lives.
“The European automotive industry is losing competitiveness as challengers from lower-cost economies have increased their share of world automotive markets” (CLEPA, European Association of automotive supplier’s White paper 2005). As a European solution to this problem, EADIS will develop training and infrastructure to enable European companies to operate more innovatively and efficiently. This project is executed in partnership with:
• Coventry University (CEPAD), UK
• Oulu University of Applied Sciences, Finland
• Munster University of Applied Sciences, Germany
• Turin Polytechnic, Italy
• Technical University of Delft, the Netherlands
An Advisory panel made up of industry representatives including RDM automotive, Ricardo and MIRA has been set up to evaluate the project. All the partners are looking forward to developing the project and using it as a platform for building relationships and collaborating internationally with other universities and industry partners.
Vehicle tracking is a way of monitoring the location, movements, status and behaviour of a vehicle or fleet of vehicles. This is achieved through a combination of a GPS ( GNSS ) receiver and an electronic device (usually comprising a GSM GPRS modem or SMS sender) installed in each vehicle, communicating with the user (dispatching, emergency or co-ordinating unit) and PC- or web-based software. The data are turned into information by management reporting tools in conjunction with a visual display on computerised mapping software. Vehicle tracking systems may also use odometry or dead reckoning as an alternative or complementary means of navigation.
Trailer tracking is the technology of tracking the movements and position of an articulated vehicle’s trailer unit, through the use of a location unit fitted to the trailer and a method of returning the position data via mobile communication network or geostationary satellite communications, for use through either PC- or web-based software.
Cold Store Freight Logistics
Cold store freight trailers that are used to deliver fresh or frozen foods are increasingly incorporating telematics to gather time-series data on the temperature inside the cargo container, both to trigger alarms and record an audit trail for business purposes. An increasingly sophisticated array of sensors, many incorporating RFID technology, are being used to ensure that temperature throughout the cargo remains within food-safety parameters.
Fleet management is the management of a company’s vehicle fleet. Fleet management includes the management of ships and or motor vehicles such as cars, vans and trucks. Fleet (vehicle) Management can include a range of Fleet Management functions, such as vehicle financing, vehicle maintenance, vehicle telematics (tracking and diagnostics), driver management, fuel management and health & safety management. Fleet Management is a function which allows companies which rely on transportation in their business to remove or minimize the risks associated with vehicle investment, improving efficiency, productivity and reducing their overall transportation costs, providing 100% compliancy with government legislation and Duty of Care obligations. These functions can either be dealt with by an in-house Fleet Management department or an outsourced Fleet Management provider.
In 2010, the Association of Equipment Managers brought together the major telematics providers in the heavy equipment industry and successfully developed the industry’s first Telematic Standard.
Satellite navigation in the context of vehicle telematics is the technology of using a GPS and electronic mapping tool to enable the driver of a vehicle to locate a position, then route plan and navigate a journey.
Wireless Vehicle Safety Communications
Wireless vehicle safety communications telematics aid in car safety and road safety. It is an electronic sub-system in a car or other vehicle for the purpose of exchanging safety information, about such things as road hazards and the locations and speeds of vehicles, over short range radio links. This may involve temporary ad hoc wireless local area networks.
Wireless units will be installed in vehicles and probably also in fixed locations such as near traffic signals and emergency call boxes along the road. Sensors in the cars and at the fixed locations, as well as possible connections to wider networks, will provide the information, which will be displayed to the drivers in some way. The range of the radio links can be extended by forwarding messages along multi-hop paths. Even without fixed units, information about fixed hazards can be maintained by moving vehicles by passing it backwards. It also seems possible for traffic lights, which one can expect to become smarter, to use this information to reduce the chance of collisions.
Further in the future, it may connect directly to the adaptive cruise control or other vehicle control aids. Cars and trucks with the wireless system connected to their brakes may move in convoys, to save fuel and space on the roads. When any column member slows down, all those behind it will automatically slow also. There are also possibilities that need less engineering effort. A radio beacon could be connected to the brake light, for example.
Network ideas are scheduled for test in fall 2008, in Europe where radio frequency bandwidth has been allocated. The 30 MHz allocated is at 5.9 GHz, and unallocated bandwidth at 5.4 GHz may also be used. The standard is IEEE 802.11p, a low latency form of the Wi-Fi local area network standard. Similar efforts are underway in Japan and the USA.
Emergency Warning System for Vehicles
Telematics technologies are self-orientating open network architecture structure of variable programmable intelligent beacons developed for application in the development of intelligent vehicles — with target intent to accord (blend, or mesh) warning information with surrounding vehicles in the vicinity of travel, intra-vehicle, and infrastructure. Emergency warning system for vehicles telematics particularly developed for international harmonisation and standardisation of vehicle-to-vehicle — infrastructure-to-vehicle — and vehicle-to-infrastructure real-time Dedicated Short Range Communication ( DSRC ) systems.
Telematics most commonly relate to computerised systems that update information at the same rate as they receive data, enabling them to direct or control a process such as an instantaneous autonomous warning notification in a remote machine or group of machines. By use of telematics as applied to intelligent vehicle technologies, instantaneous direction travel cognizance of a vehicle may be transmitted in real-time to surrounding vehicles traveling in the local area of vehicles equipped (with EWSV) to receive said warning signals of danger.
Intelligent Vehicle Technologies
Telematics comprise electronic, electromechanical, and electromagnetic devices — usually silicon micromachined components operating in conjunction with computer controlled devices and radio transceivers to provide precision repeatability functions (such as in robotics artificial intelligence systems) emergency warning validation performance reconstruction.
Intelligent vehicle technologies commonly apply to car safety systems and self-contained autonomous electromechanical sensors generating warnings that can be transmitted within a specified targeted area of interest, say within 100 meters of the emergency warning system for vehicles transceiver. In ground applications, intelligent vehicle technologies are utilized for safety and commercial communications between vehicles or between a vehicle and a sensor along the road.
On November 3, 2009 the most advanced Intelligent Vehicle concept car was demonstrated in New York City. A 2010 Toyota Prius became the first LTE Connected Car. The demonstration was provided by the NG Connect project, a collaboration of automotive telematic technologies designed to exploit in-car 4G wireless network connectivity.
Telematics technology has allowed car clubs to emerge, such as City Car Club in the UK. Telematics-enabled computers allow organizers to track members’ usage and bill them on a pay-as-you-drive. Car Clubs such as Australia’s Charter Drive use telematics to monitor and report on vehicle use within pre-defined geofence areas, in order to demonstrate the reach of their transit media car club fleet.
The basic idea of telematic auto insurance is that a driver’s behavior is monitored directly while the person drives and this information is transmitted to an insurance company. The insurance company then assesses the risk of that driver having an accident and charges insurance premiums accordingly. A driver who drives long distance at high speed, for example, will be charged a higher rate than a driver who drives short distances at slower speeds.
Telematic auto insurance was independently invented and patented by a major US auto insurance company, Progressive Auto Insurance US Patent 5,797,134 and a Spanish independent inventor, Salvador Minguijon Perez ( European Patent EP0700009B1 ). The Progressive patents cover the use of a cell phone and GPS to track movements of a car. The Perez patents cover monitoring the car’s engine control computer to determine distance driven, speed, time of day, braking force, etc. Ironically, Progressive is developing the Perez technology in the US and European auto insurer Norwich Union is developing the Progressive technology for Europe.
Trials conducted by Norwich Union in 2005 have found that young drivers (18 to 23 year olds) signing up for telematic auto insurance have had a 20% lower accident rate than average.
Recent theoretical economic research on the social welfare effects of Progressive’s telematics technology business process patents have questioned whether the business process patents are pare to efficient for society. Preliminary results suggest that it is not, but more work is needed.
- Matthew Wright, Editor, UK Telematics Online
- IEEE Communications Magazine, April 2005, “Ad Hoc Peer-to-Peer Network Architecture for Vehicle Safety Communications”
- IEEE Communications Magazine, April 2005, “The Application-Based Clustering Concept and Requirements for Intervehicle Networks”
- Jerzy Mikulski, Editor, “Advances in Transport Systems Telematics”. Monograph. Publisher Jacek Skalmierski Computer Studio. Katowice 2006.
- Jerzy Mikulski, Editor, “Advances in Transport Systems Telematics 2”. Monograph. Publisher Chair of Automatic Control in Transport, Faculty of Transport, Silesian University of Technology. Katowice 2007.
- World report on road traffic injury prevention.World Health Organization.