Road Surface Information

Increasing safety should be a smooth ride.

Augmenting the driver’s perception of the road surface is key to increasing the safety on our roads. And when it comes to self-driving cars, the knowledge about road conditions is of course an absolute necessity. With Road Surface Information (RSI), this can be achieved in a truly cost-efficient manner – using software only.

RSI continuously gathers vital road information – such as road roughness and friction – by smartly fusing information from existing sensors in the car. It also detects potholes and speedbumps, and alerts the driver if necessary. On a side note, this also enables automatic suspension settings for a more comfortable journey.

While the data gathered using RSI can be vital to the driver of the car in question (or the car itself), that’s only half the story. The real benefits come from using RSI in a connected vehicle cloud. Imagine thousands and thousands of cars collecting vital road information in real-time – and then sharing this in a connected vehicle cloud. All driver data in anonymized, and the OEMs we work with give drivers the option to opt-out if they desire.

The data, which is sent to a server (where it’s aggregated, analyzed and anonymized) can be used to provide a descriptive or even predictive map layer of any road segment – enabling both nowcasting and forecasting of the road status. This means that the possibilities provided by RSI are basically endless; from increasing driver awareness through slip hazard warnings and weather based navigation data, to enabling more efficient road maintenance. In the end, it’s all about the next level of mobility, making our roads safer for everybody.

And all the driver needs to do is …well, drive.

RSI gathers vital road surface information through advanced sensor fusion, and provides both descriptive and predictive analyses of the road status.

Delta-tic graph showing the oscillations around the linear trend of the batch for the front right wheel.

Calculated delta-tic batch variance for all wheels.

Road Surface Information – in less than a minute

Through advanced sensor fusion, RSI by NIRA gathers road surface information and alerts the driver to anything from potholes to speed bumps. Here’s how it works.