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Friday, April 05, 2019

World’s first Multi-Country, cross-border demo of C-V2X

By Nick Flaherty

Connecting vehicles is a key driver for the industry, but making it happen across different countries is a major challenge. 

Audi, Ericsson, Qualcomm, SWARCO and Technical University of Kaiserslautern have shown how it can be achieved at a new trilateral testbed in France, Germany and Luxembourg.

The companies, which formed the Connected Vehicle to Everything of Tomorrow (ConVeX) consortium in 2016 to carry out the first announced C-V2X trial based upon the 3rd Generation Partnership Project’s (3GPP) Release 14, participated in cross-border digital testbed Project Day in Schengen, Luxembourg, at the new trilateral testbed. 

Audi vehicles and SWARCO’s intelligent road infrastructure are equipped with C-V2X technology using the Qualcomm 9150 C-V2X Platform. Throughout the event, the Qualcomm 9150 C-V2X Platform was used to show vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) safety use cases, demonstrating the maturity and potential of C-V2X technology and the ability to operate without the need for SIM subscription (via PC5) to potentially address challenges faced with roaming and network subscriptions. These use cases include Roadworks Warnings (RWW), In-Vehicle Information (IVI) and Slow or Stationary Vehicle Warnings.

SWARCO provides connected and cooperative traffic management on all established channels. In Schengen through the ConVeX project, SWARCO provides for the first time a C-V2X technology-based communication between real infrastructure components and vehicles on public roads in Europe.

The key is that the C-V2X technology and products are commercially available, and make use of years of C-ITS investment and the evolution of wireless communications. The cross border demonstration follows the successful cooperation and integration of the technology among the participating companies throughout 2018 and thus far in 2019 around Europe, China, Japan, Korea, Australia, and the United States. This also heads off the challenge from 5G that comes with cross-border roaming enabled.

The 9150 C-V2X Platform is commercially available and is being used in C-V2X systems rolling out this year along roadways and into vehicles, respectively. Further, Qualcomm Technologies recently announced the integration of C-V2X into the Snapdragon Automotive 4G and 5G Platforms, designed to ensure that next generation connected vehicle solutions natively support C-V2X starting from 2021 to provide both technology options.

“Digitization and cross-industry collaboration have always been key to shaping the connected and autonomous vehicles of tomorrow,” said Jens Kötz, Head of Electrics, Electronics Networking & Energy Systems at Audi. “As we’ve seen through the latest demonstrations from the ConVeX consortium, the evolution of communication technology in vehicles is developing at a rapid pace, and as the technology continues to evolve towards 5G, we can expect to see major advancements around new solutions focused on safety, comfort and entertainment functionalities.”

“Today’s demonstration showcased the importance of global connectivity solutions with scalable, flexible, secure and future-proof solutions,” said Jan-Peter Meyer-Kahlen, Head of ICT Development Centers Eurolab Aachen. “We’re happy to have taken the next step with ConVex and with the support of governments from France, Luxembourg and Germany. We’re hopeful that manufacturers and fleet operators across the world see this demonstration and understand that with the right partners, achieving the full potential of connected vehicles is ultimately possible.”

“Bringing superior technologies and products to commercialization in a manner that better connects people across the world has always been a priority for Qualcomm Technologies. This demonstration serves as another proof point that we are on our way to reaching our vision for smart transportation – one which supports an increased safety-consciousness and more efficient driving experience,” said Enrico Salvatori, senior vice president & president Qualcomm EMEA at Qualcomm Europe. “With a strong evolution path in 3GPP to 5G New Radio (NR), Qualcomm Technologies continues to invest in the C-V2X roadmap to offer new and complementary capabilities. The possibilities are endless, and we’re excited to be a part of it.”

“Since ConVeX was founded almost two years ago, we’ve been witness to some of the most pioneering advancements in bridging the language gap between road infrastructure and connected vehicles,” said Michael Schuch, Speaker of the Executive Board, SWARCO AG. “By bringing together some of the most creative minds within the auto, telecommunications and infrastructure industries, we’ve been able to showcase a seamless and technical C-V2X experience that we will soon be able to bring to everyday road users.”

“Two years ago, when the ConVeX consortium was established, we were focused on the enormous potential that connected and collaborative mobility had to improve traffic efficiency, enhance safety and lower emissions,” said Professor Hans D. Schotten, Technical University of Kaiserslautern. “Today we’ve witnessed exactly that. ConVeX and those involved continue to showcase the immense ability to utilize the latest technologies to move towards the ultimate vision of seamless intelligent driving.”

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