Audi is working with authorities in Dusseldorf, Germany, to give drivers traffic light information directly into the cockpit of their car.
By the end of January 2020, Audi Traffic Light Information will advise drivers about 150 traffic lights in their cockpit, with most intersections in the city following by early summer.
The German car giant says vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) services like Audi Traffic Light Information increase efficiency, convenience and safety.
Audi Traffic Light Information consists of two functions, Green Light Optimized Speed Advisory (GLOSA) and Time-to-Green.
GLOSA calculates the ideal speed to get a ‘green wave’, advising drivers of the required speed to the next green light.
It can suggest reducing speed gradually about 250m ahead of traffic lights, so drivers and cars reach the intersection when the lights turn green, reducing stop-start traffic.
If stopping at a red light is unavoidable, a countdown displays the seconds until the next green light.
According to Audi, studies show drivers move through cities more efficiently with networked traffic lights, and a pilot project showed Audi could reduce fuel consumption by 15%.
Andre Hainzlmaier, head of development for apps, connected service and smart city at Audi, said that the aim of Audi Traffic Light Information is to improve driver convenience, increase traffic safety and encourage economical driving.
“To do this, we have to predict precisely how traffic lights will behave in the next two minutes. At the same time, exact forecasts are the biggest challenge. Most signals react variably to traffic volume and continuously adapt the intervals at which they switch between red and green,” he said.
Audi and project partner Traffic Technology Services have developed algorithms to calculate predictions from three sources: the control program of the traffic signals, real-time data of the traffic computer as well as historical data.
Audi is adding to the data, Hainzlmaier explained: “The cars send anonymized data when traffic lights are crossed to an Audi back end, which checks whether the actual crossings of traffic lights correspond to the forecast data. Only after this are the traffic lights cleared for the display in the car.”
In the future, cities will receive information about their traffic light infrastructure, including waiting times.
Hainzlmaier said, “We aggregate the recorded data into reports that we will make available to the city authorities. Traffic lights can then be given more efficient phasing and traffic will flow better.”
Audi Traffic Light Information is available on 2020 model year e-tron, A4, A6, A7, A8, Q3, Q7 and Q8s with the Audi connect Navigation and Infotainment package and the optional camera-based traffic-sign recognition.
To watch the traffic light solution in action, click here.