The Hianic Project is funded by the French National Research Agency since January 2018. This project is part of the “Axe : Véhicules propres, sûrs, connectés, automatisés ” of the “défi 6 – mobilité et systèmes urbains durables.
In the next decades, cybercars will be among us, initially in dedicated ways. Then, when they are accepted and trusted by people, they will share the urban space with other road users. With the development of soundless and autonomous cybercars new security issues arise.
An autonomous vehicle is not a “simple” robot, such as a robot companion, but a robot that transports people. That implies that the people inside must feel integrated in the environment, as they would be in a driven car. They expect, as well as people in the surroundings, the cybercar to behave accordingly adhering to social and urban conventions and negotiating its path among crowded environments. This is a new challenging topic that must and will be tackled in the HIANIC project.
The HIANIC project will try to address some problems that will arise when these cars are mixed with pedestrians. The HIANIC project will develop new technologies in term of autonomous navigation in dense and human populated traffic. It will explore the complex problem of navigating autonomously in shared-space environments, where pedestrians and cars share the same environment.
Such a system will contribute both to urban safety and intelligent mobility in “shared spaces”. Negotiation will help to avoid frozen situations increasing the vehicle’s reactivity and optimizing the navigable space. Negotiation, Human-Aware Navigation and Communication will contribute to a better public acceptance of such autonomous systems and facilitate their penetration in the transportation landscape.