As autonomous vehicles are introduced to our roads, they will co-exist with vehicles of varying levels of autonomy, including those that are manually-driven or semi-autonomous. While manually-driven vehicles can communicate with pedestrians through cues such as eye contact and hand gestures, semi-autonomous and autonomous vehicles will not. To study this future interaction, we designed a pedestrian simulator in virtual reality (VR). We immersed participants in VR to evaluate how they could make safe crossing decisions when faced with vehicles of varying autonomy level. Our findings highlight the role interfaces play in communicating awareness and intent, across vehicles of all autonomy levels, and demonstrate the usefulness of immersive pedestrian simulators in designing autonomous vehicle interfaces.

Pedestrian Simulator
Friday, October 19, 2018 - 10:45pm

Designing a Pedestrian Simulator for Autonomous Vehicles in Mixed Traffic

Overview

Friday October 19th, 2018
Pedestrian Simulator

As autonomous vehicles are introduced to our roads, they will co-exist with vehicles of varying levels of autonomy, including those that are manually-driven or semi-autonomous. While manually-driven vehicles can communicate with pedestrians through cues such as eye contact and hand gestures, semi-autonomous and autonomous vehicles will not. To study this future interaction, we designed a pedestrian simulator in virtual reality (VR). We immersed participants in VR to evaluate how they could make safe crossing decisions when faced with vehicles of varying autonomy level. Our findings highlight the role interfaces play in communicating awareness and intent, across vehicles of all autonomy levels, and demonstrate the usefulness of immersive pedestrian simulators in designing autonomous vehicle interfaces.

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