Wireless Communication Technologies for Vehicular Nodes: A Survey

Wireless Communication Technologies for Vehicular Nodes: A Survey

Vasuky Mohanan, Rahmat Budiarto
DOI: 10.4018/jmcmc.2013040105
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In many countries, road accidents are a leading cause of death as well as being financially draining to the authorities concerned. This problem can be alleviated by having a mechanism to enable exchange of safety related messages to road users in a timely manner. This has given rise to active research in identifying the best technology. Providing comfort and smooth driving experience is also propelling the need to support vehicular communication. These groups of applications present opposing paradigms whereby safety related messages must be exchanged in real-time and characterized by short bursts of traffic and satisfying these diverse criteria are challenging for wireless communications that is the backbone of vehicular communication. Additionally, vehicular nodes sometimes move at high speeds, presenting an added dimension to the complexities surrounding vehicular communication. This article attempts to show the many myriad wireless technologies that have been tossed about as the solution. Choosing the most suitable candidate has to take into account many aspects. This article guides stakeholders such as transport policy decision makers, vehicle makers, and spectrum allocator, to enable them to make a wise and informed decision regarding the right mechanism to use to support vehicular communication.
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Vehicular communications can be divided into three types, namely intra-vehicle communication (InV), vehicle to vehicle communication (V2V) and vehicle to infrastructure communication (V2I). Each category of vehicular communications presents unique challenges and constraints plus requirements making it difficult to find the best technology that can support each category well. In fact, this article will highlight among other things the fact that one glove fits all sizes scenario does not apply here. In depth analysis is provided in this article that compares each candidate technology for each communication group highlighting the differences as well as similarities in order to provide a complete picture of the candidate technologies. By comparing technical characteristics of existing and current wireless technologies proposed for vehicular communication, this article proposes the most apt choice for supporting vehicular communication. This article is by no means complete but attempts to be as comprehensive as possible. The demands for providing efficient vehicular communication is driven by the urgency in reducing vehicle related accidents as well as ubiquitous computing mantra of providing connections anytime, anywhere, anyhow. As the requirements for vehicular applications are highly diverse, identifying the most suitable wireless technology that serves all needs will be a mammoth task. As such this article will also suggest the most suitable candidate technology for each communication group based on inherent technical characteristics and how well those characteristics can support applications unique to vehicular nodes. Therefore, the discussion and analysis provided in this article will shed some light in making that task easier for related policy makers and stakeholders. Car makers as well as authorities in charge of transportation have indicated that applications that enhances safety is a priority when building vehicles and designing transport policies (Gerla & Kleinrock, 2011). Therefore, future transportation planners and vehicle makers can use this article as a tool in making informed decisions regarding the future of intelligent transportation system.

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