Special Issue on Fundamental Technologies for ITS
National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST)ITS Research Group, Group Leader Namiki 1-2-1, Tsukuba-shi, Ibaraki-ken 305-8564, Japan
Intelligent transport systems (ITS), a combination of IT(Information Technology) and TS (Transport Systems), solves problems such as accidents and congestion, lessening environmental impact and conserving energy. As conventional solutions to traffic issues became less and less effective, high-tech solutions have been sought. Preceding the term ITS, coined in 1994, were road transport informatics (RTI), advanced transport telematics (AT), and intelligent vehicle-highway systems (IVHS). In the mid-1980s, large ITS projects started in Europe, the US, and Japan, but the use of high-tech solutions emerged in the 1950s. As indicated above, ITS includes systems covering passenger-car safety and freight management, supported by a wide range of technologies including sensing, control, communications, and human factors. This special issue on ITS focuses on ITS technologies that share similarities with robotics and mechatronics. The papers in this issue are classed into sensing, control, simulation, and electric vehicles. Papers in sensing deal with the application of vehicle localization in automated driving, 3-dimensional localization with corner cubes and laser radar, vision-based passage detection, and night-time obstacle detection with machine vision. The technology presented in these papers is expected to play an important role in robotics and mechatronics. The 4 control papers include an overview on control algorithms for automated driving and 3 papers on control algorithms for lateral control, lane changing, and parking assistance. The major difference between mobile robots and automobiles is that, due to speed, the behavior of mobile robots can be described with kinematics, but that of automobiles must be described with dynamics. Nevertheless, control algorithms for automated automobiles are insightful in robotics. Simulation technologies are essential in ITS to present virtually situations difficult or not possible to realize in the real world. One paper deals with a driving simulator and the other with automobile traffic. The last area in this ITS issue is electric vehicles. Their handicaps can be overcome by ITS, leading to new road transport. The paper on electric vehicles introduces an experimental electric vehicle both educational and informative to readers planning electric vehicles to conduct experiments involving ITS. We thank those on the JSME Research Committee 179 for cooperation between human and systems in ITS for reviewing submitted papers.
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