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Before the end of this year, the unelected National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will decide whether or not to begin the rule making process to mandate that newly manufactured cars include what is being called “vehicle-to-vehicle” (V2V) communications technology that constantly broadcasts via radio wave the car’s location, direction, speed and, possibly, even the number of passengers it is carrying.
NHTSA sees this technology as the first step on a “continuum” of automotive evolution that will ultimately lead to fully automated vehicles navigated by internal electronics linked to external infrastructure, communications and database systems reports CNS News.
The government would the capability to exert increasing control over when, where, if--or for how much additional taxation--people are allowed to go places in individually owned vehicles. It could also give government the ability to track where people go and when.
There would be six components that would be deployed in vehicles equipped with V2V. These included:
- a Dedicated Short Range Communications (DSRC) radio that “receives and transmits data through antennae,”
- a GPS receiver that “provides vehicle position and time to DSRC radio” and “provides timekeeping signal for applications,”
- an “internal communications network” that incorporates the “existing network that interconnects components” in the vehicle,
- an electronic control unit that “runs safety applications,”
- a driver-vehicle interface that “generates warning[s] issued to driver,”
- a memory that “stores security certificates, application data and other information.”