Prototyping and Evaluation of Infrastructure-assisted Transition of Control for Cooperative Automated Vehicles
B. Coll-Perales, J. Schulte-Tigges, M. Rondinone, J. Gozalvez, M. Reke, D. Matheis, and T. Walter
IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Transportation Systems  (March 2021)
Ed. IEEE  ISSN:1524-9050  DOI:10.1109/TITS.2021.3061085


Automated driving is now possible in diverse road and traffic conditions. However, there are still situations that automated vehicles cannot handle safely and efficiently. In this case, a Transition of Control (ToC) is necessary so that the driver takes control of the driving. Executing a ToC requires the driver to get full situation awareness of the driving environment. If the driver fails to get back the control in a limited time, a Minimum Risk Maneuver (MRM) is executed to bring the vehicle into a safe state (e.g., decelerating to full stop). The execution of ToCs requires some time and can cause traffic disruption and safety risks that increase if several vehicles execute ToCs/MRMs at similar times and in the same area. This study proposes to use novel C-ITS traffic management measures where the infrastructure exploits V2X communications to assist Connected and Automated Vehicles (CAVs) in the execution of ToCs. The infrastructure can suggest a spatial distribution of ToCs, and inform vehicles of the locations where they could execute a safe stop in case of MRM. This paper reports the first field operational tests that validate the feasibility and quantify the benefits of the proposed infrastructure-assisted ToC and MRM management. The paper also presents the CAV and roadside infrastructure prototypes implemented and used in the trials. The conducted field trials demonstrate that infrastructure-assisted traffic management solutions can reduce safety risks and traffic disruptions.