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Remote Driving

This proposed project will research the feasibility of human operators reliably driving vehicles on the real transportation network from remote “driving centers”. This can be achieved using wireless communication, appropriate interfaces and sensing information as well as short-term autonomy. The envisioned solution involves cars with relatively inexpensive on-board cameras and sensors transmitting data to a remote driving center. There, a human driver using an interface similar to today’s car-driving simulators operates the car remotely. The commands are transmitted in a secure manner back to the vehicle, which uses minimal autonomy to follow the directions and guarantee safety. To make this vision real, this project will synergistically assemble progress along many research areas, such as advanced networking systems, efficient processing of sensing data, study of human factors, reliable short-term autonomy, secure protocols, and public policy aspects. Although tele-operating a vehicle or robot in special conditions has been done before, the challenges of remotely driving a car on the road have not been studied as a complex inter-dependent cyber-human system.