CONNECTED VEHICLES: Army to test driverless vehicle technology on I-69 in Michigan

The vehicles will be testing a piece of technology that is a critical piece in the development and testing of driverless and connected vehicles

May 26, 2016
driverless and connected vehicle technology
driverless and connected vehicle technology

A convoy of U.S. Army vehicles will be cruising Interstate 69 in Michigan’s St. Clair and Lapeer counties in late June to test driverless and connected vehicle technology.

The U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) and the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) will hold public information sessions on the testing May 23 in Imlay City and Capac.

The convoy will test vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure radio communications. The technology used to communicate between the Army line-haul vehicles and between the vehicles and infrastructure is the type of computerized communication that would be used in an autonomous vehicle.

The vehicles need to send communication both to vehicles around it and to radio points set up within the infrastructure to anticipate changes such as an upcoming curve in the road or a widening of the roadway.

Rob Morosi, a spokesman for MDOT, said the ability to communicate changes or obstacles in the roadway could eventually lead to safer driving. He added that a total of six radio units are installed along the highway infrastructure, five that are temporary and one that is permanent.