Smart Communications for Intelligent Transportation Systems


  • Computer and Communication Systems, University of Innsbruck (since April 2014 Distributed Embedded Systems, Paderborn University)
  • Department of Information Engineering and Computer Science, University of Trento, Italy



  • BIT PhD School

Project Time

  • 01.04.2012 - 31.03.2015


Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) aim mainly at the reduction of traffic-related accidents, the improvement of the infrastructure exploitation, and the reduction of energy consumption and pollution. The key components of ITS are inter-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication (IVC). Without proper communication means that empower the distribution of data so that informed and intelligent decisions can be taken, any application of ITC technologies and methodologies at ITS remains vain.

Within this broad framework this PhD proposal is focused mainly on understanding, modeling, exploiting and possibly improving the IEEE 802.11 standard amendment 802.11p or WAVE (Wireless Access in Vehicular Environment). Several lines of research can be identified within this focus, which are intertwined and require a cross-layer approach.

First of all, the behavior and characteristics of WAVE communications must be understood at a higher level than it has been analyzed so far: the presence of hundreds of communicating devices all moving at high speed and using the same frequency channels makes even the definition of the communication channel itself extremely difficult. Novel work is needed to find appropriate channel models to be used in conjunction with safety-related application, where approximate or wrong modeling of the communication part may lead to malfunctioning systems, which is unacceptable in these cases. The novel models must be validated, possibly against the first real implementations of IEEE 802.11p and not only against simulation tools.

Secondly, proper IVC protocols must be designed to properly support safety and non-safety applications. In particular, it is envisaged that vehicles will be equipped with multiple radios to exploit the multiple available channels, specifically to guarantee that the safety-related channel is continuously monitored. This scenario requires adequate coordination. If we can assume that infotainment applications will run on orthogonal channels from safety, other applications, such as cooperative driving, may require the use of dedicated channels, but are tightly intertwined with basic safety applications, so that proper joint management is required.

Selected Publications