Yokohama — Since October 2019, Bosch has started data collection with its test vehicle on expressways around the Kanto region, such as the Tomei Expressway, the Chuo Expressway, and the Kan-etsu Expressway, for the Road Signature vehicle localization technology to create highly precise 3D maps for automated driving. Bosch plans to complete collection of data that can be integrated into highly accurate 3D maps by the end of fiscal year 2020.

Road Signature is a service that localizes a vehicle by comparing two types of data set; first, information of stationary features detected by radar and video sensors mounted on an automated vehicle while driving and, secondly, information of stationary features in a previously generated localization layer (map elements based on location data of stationary features detected by series production vehicles). By comparing these two data sets in real time, the service can constantly determine the relative position of the vehicle on the highly precise 3D map.

The company has been active in development of Road Signature towards commercialization in Japan since 2017. In 2018, Bosch succeeded in generating a highly precise 3D map which integrates maps provided by Dynamic Map Platform Co., Ltd.,* and Bosch's localization layer. In testing automated driving on public roads using this highly precise 3D map, Bosch confirmed that Road Signature is an effective localization service.

Safe automated driving with redundant vehicle localization concept
Automated driving can be realized when vehicle locations can be determined in the decimetre range. To achieve this, Bosch is developing vehicle localization technologies with redundancy that integrate services, hardware, and software.

Road signature: feature-based localization service for the relative position of the vehicle
With Road Signature, data captured by radar and video sensors mounted on the vehicle is transmitted to a cloud by an on-board communication module. Based on this data, a localization layer is generated on Bosch's cloud. Since it uses radar as well as video sensors, the system is highly robust also at poor weather conditions. Bosch's expertise gained from in-house development of radar and video sensors and deep knowledge of their respective characteristics is an advantage in developing Road Signature. Another feature of the service is its dynamics in data. Under the Road Signature concept, data is obtained from series production vehicles and service provider fleets. This enables changes in road status such as lane changes due to constructions and traffic accidents to be recognized, and a localization layer that reflects the changes can be provided.

VMPS: sensor for the absolute position of the vehicle
Bosch has developed a sensor that allows automated vehicles to precisely determine their position: the Vehicle Motion and Position Sensor (VMPS). The VMPS contains a receiver unit for global navigation satellite system (GNSS) signals which are essential for estimating the absolute position of an automated vehicle. However, inaccuracies in GNSS signals due to ionosphere and layers of cloud in the troposphere must be corrected. The VMPS is able to specify the absolute position of the vehicle using a corrected GNSS signal that satisfies the conditions for automated driving. GNSS signals are not the only information the vehicle motion and position sensor receives: thanks to an interface for receiving information from inertial, wheel-speed, and steering-angle sensors to determine the movement of the vehicle and intelligent software for processing this information. In cases where the GNSS signal is unstable, these on-board sensors assist with vehicle localization. If the satellite connection is lost, for instance when the vehicle enters a tunnel, the VMPS can continue to determine the vehicle's position for several seconds by using information about the vehicle's direction and speed obtained from the on-board sensors to calculate from the position where the GNSS signal was last received.

However, Japan has environments where GNSS signals cannot be received for a longer period due to long tunnels, streets lined with skyscrapers, and multi layered expressways. Even in such challenging situations, redundancy provided by the complementary technologies VMPS and Road Signature contributes to reliable automated driving.

Key technologies for automated driving at Tokyo Motor Show 2019
Bosch will present key technologies for automated driving, including vehicle localization technologies, at Tokyo Motor Show 2019. In addition to vehicle localization technologies, Bosch will introduce its wide-ranging portfolio such as surround sensing, on-board computers, in-cabin monitoring, redundant brake systems, and cyber security.

Tokyo Motor Show 2019
Press Briefing
Date and time:October 24 (Thursday) 8:45 a.m. ~ 9:00 a.m.
Location:Bosch booth (South 3/4 hall, booth S3402)
Speakers:Board of management member, Robert Bosch GmbH
Chairman of the Mobility Solutions business sector
Dr. Stefan Hartung

Board of management member, Robert Bosch GmbH
Mobility Solutions business sector
Dr. Markus Heyn

Tokyo Motor Show highlights will be featured on a special website and the Bosch Japan Twitter feed.

* Dynamic Map Platform Co., Ltd.
6F, 4-1-21, Muromachi, Nihonbashi, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
CEO, Hiroyuki Inahata

Contact persons for press inquiries:
Kiyohiko Sumiya
Aiko Furuichi