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Third-party-funded project

Driver assistance and active safety: Concept of a driver assistance system for intersections

Project management at the University of Würzburg:

Participating scientists:

Negotiating crossroads is a dangerous part of the driving task. Apart from road design and traffic regulation there exists a potential for in-vehicle assistance systems to reduce accident probability by informing and advising the driver before and throughout the manoeuvre.
On the other hand, it is easily imaginable that additional information provided by a technical assistance system might increase the driver's workload to unacceptable levels or divert driver attention at critical moments. Therefore it is necessary to identify what information the driver needs in order to make a successful manoeuvre at a crossroad.
Two sets of experiments were performed: Based on a psychological task analysis controlled studies of estimation of time-to-arrival identified perceptual limitations which could be augmented by technical systems. In a second set of experiments, subjects negotiated crossroads in the simulator, where several factors thought to be relevant for accident or conflict generation were manipulated. Observation of subjects' gaze direction by means of a remote tracking apparatus allowed for a posteriori identification of reasons for conflicts: One class of conflicts resulted from conscious risk acceptance, while in another situation the relevant traffic participant simply was not perceived at all.
It was possible to arrive at recommendations for future assistance systems based on the observed dynamics of information acquisition.

Key words:
    intelligent transport systems
    driver assistance
    driver information
    traffic conflicts technique
    visual perception

Projekt period: from 10.2002 to 12.2003

Funding institution:
Wirtschaftsunternehmen ( WIVW in Verbindung mit BMW Group, D-80788 München )
Wirtschaftsunternehmen ( WIVW in Verbindung mit Bosch GmbH, Postfach 106050, D-70049 Stuttgart )
Wirtschaftsunternehmen ( WIVW in Verbindung mit DaimlerChrysler AG, 70546 Stuttgart )
Wirtschaftsunternehmen ( WIVW in Verbindung mit VW AG, Berliner Ring 2, 38440 Wolfsburg )

Chair of Psychology III (Methods and Traffic Psychology)
Center for Traffic Sciences