The projects that were granted in our first call for pre-studies have now started up. The latest project “Human factors related to remote control of automated heavy vehicles” is aiming to look into the potential safety issues from human factors perspective related to remote control of heavy automated vehicles.
Automated vehicles have been under development for many years, but it is still largely unknown how this new technology will impact evolving transportation systems, our social world, and the individuals who live within it and whether such systems ought to be fully automated or remain under some form of direct human control.
The human as a supervisor – not as a driver
It may be that human intervention need not necessarily be from inside the vehicle; instead the physical location of the human controller can be remote from the actual vehicle itself. Regardless of the specific spatial relations between controller and vehicle, the human operator will require levels of effective situation awareness calibrated to ambient environmental demands at all times because the point at which any such human intervention will be required remains unpredictable as yet. Again, this raises the specter of prolonged vigilance and its well-known decrement and response failure. This human-as-backup architecture, which removes the person from momentary control and instead places him or her in a supervisory context, in many ways defeats the very idea of automation in the first place. However, it is currently seen as a necessary transition phase, and a way to put driverless vehicles on the market in the near future.
In this pre-study, which will be conducted by researchers from RISE and Scania, the aim is to identify potential safety challenges related to human factors in the context of remote control of heavy automated vehicles. The project will build upon previously conducted projects in the field and strives after to provide more in-depth knowledge on human factors that have not been addressed yet. The research question addressed by the project: What are potential safety issues from human factors perspective related to remote control of heavy automated vehicles?
SAFER’s pre-studies - Strategic knowledge creation
Last autumn SAFER launched the opportunity for funding of pre-studies to our partners. The pre-studies should proactively stimulate project generation to maximize the benefits of our multi-disciplinary platform and obtain a broad commitment, both between partners and within research areas. Projects should focus on selected areas that help meet SAFER’s overall vision, research objectives and also support the UN Sustainable Development Goals. All SAFER partners on level 1 and 2 are welcome to participate in creating project proposals. The next call opens in April and the applications should be sent by May 22. The proposals are processed in the reference groups and it is finally the SAFER Board that decides on which proposals should be granted funds. The total budget per year is preliminary 600 ksek, and the maximum funding per pre-study is 100 ksek.
SAFER also aims to provide projects that are of a different nature, such as an accomplished project that requires time to be published in a scientific journal or similar. Simply, all project that leads SAFER forward and contributes to the continued development of the joint collaboration platform will be possible to apply for.