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Are Cameras The Right Answer For Autonomous Vehicles?

"The use of wireless technologies is an integral part of modern life.  Radio, TV, Wi-Fi and Cellular technologies are part of the backbone of the economy. However, even with these established technologies, there are issues with providing adequate coverage. Interference from both man-made and natural sources is a concern.  Today, when issues occur, the result is largely inconvenience.  Autonomous Vehicles (AVs) use a whole host of wireless technologies as a basic part of perception and communication.  If not carefully handled, there is the potential for significant safety issues because misbehaviour of AVs can cause significant physical harm.

First, is this really a problem? An incident with an Intel Mobileye AV demonstration in Israel provides some insight. In this incident, Mobileye’s car ran a red light, and according to Mobileye, this was due to ElectroMagnetic Interference (EMI) between a wireless camera used by the TV crew and the traffic light’s wireless transponder.   This happened at a well-orchestrated demonstration. One would expect the real-life operation to be the worst. In general, EMI is a real problem that is easy to ignore because it is invisible. The reality of EMI’s intersection with AV operation opens up a whole host of questions."

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