Team Imara

Overall Objectives
Scientific Foundations
Application Domains
New Results
Contracts and Grants with Industry
Other Grants and Activities

Section: Scientific Foundations

Communications with vehicles

Participants : Thierry Ernst, Yacine Khaled, JinHyeock Choi, Manabu Tsukada, Olivier Mehani, Jong-Hyouk Lee, Satoru Noguchi, Ines Ben Jemaa, Hongliang Zhang.

As witnessed by standardization activities, conferences, research work and ITS projects around the world, Internet-based communications in vehicular networks is now under the spotlight. Most of the research and development work in this area is only considering the Internet for multimedia communications or together with the use of 3G cellular links for Internet-based communications. Few teams are investigating the use of the TCP/IP suite of protocols and their extensions for real vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communications, i.e. not only for multimedia, but also for navigation and safety purposes where critical data are exchanged over the air between vehicles. Based on our expertise in both Internet-based communications in the mobility context and in ITS, we are now investigating the use of IPv6 (Internet Protocol version 6 which is going to replace the current version, IPv4, in a few years from now) for vehicular communications, in a combined architecture allowing both V2V and V2I.

Short term objectives in this domain is the development of routing protocols which are fast enough to allow cooperative manoeuvres between cybercars, the specification of IPv6 mobility features that will improve the known routing inefficiencies and the performance analysis of existing routing and path selection mechanisms. New standards for vehicle to vehicle communications are also expected from this activity through our involvement in standardization bodies (ISO, IETF and ETSI).

Longer term activities include studying novel routing mechanisms such as a geographic addressing and routing (geonetworking), specifying mechanisms that will allow to guarantee a minimum quality of service while a vehicle is moving across heterogeneous access networks, and the analysis of security threats on the vehicular networks. All of these are parts of our objective to provide a packet-switched communication architecture suitable for the vehicular networks needs.

Below follows a more detailed description of the related research issues.

Combination of MANET and NEMO

Mobile Adhoc Network (MANET) - or more precisely VANET (Vehicular Adhoc Network) in our specific case - routing protocols are mostly used for vehicle-vehicle communications and network mobility (NEMO) support protocols to maintain the Internet access for vehicle-infrastructure communications. The necessary interaction between MANET and NEMO (known as MANEMO) brings a number of technical and scientific issues in terms of addressing requirements (infrastructure-less vs infrastructure-based), improved routing (routing optimization) and improved network accessibility (multihoming) because protocols have been specified independently from one another. In addition, we are investigating new routing protocol approaches adapted for the vehicular network characteristics. This includes GeoNetworking where a certain information, particularly safety information, is delivered to all or a set of vehicles located in a specific geographic area with minimum network overhead and minimum latency. GeoNetworking is the favored approach in the automotive industry.

Multihoming in Nested Mobile Networks with Route Optimization

Network mobility has the particularity of allowing recursive mobility, i.e. where a mobile node is attached to another mobile node (e.g. a PDA is attached to the in-vehicle IP network). This is referred to as nested mobility and brings a number of research issues in terms of routing efficiency. Another issue under such mobility configurations is the availability of multiple paths to the Internet (still in the same example, the PDA has a 3G interface and the in-vehicle network has some dedicated access to the Internet) and its appropriate selection.

Service Discovery

Vehicles in a close vicinity need to discover what information can be made available to other vehicles (e.g. road traffic conditions, safety notification for collision avoidance). We are investigating both push and pull approaches and the ability of these mechanisms to scale to a large number of vehicles and services on offer.

Quality of Service (QoS)

The use of heterogeneous wireless technologies for vehicular networks incur varying delivering delays or loss, though safety and some non-safety data must be transmitted in a bounded time frame. Also, these wireless technologies are often offered by various access network operators with different billing and filtering policies. We therefore need to investigate into mechanisms to provision network resources across access networks with different characteristics.


Data exchanged between vehicles must be clearly authenticated and should guarantee the privacy of the vehicle user, as much from a location point of view as from a data content point of view. Mechanisms must be embedded into the communication architecture to prevent intruder to corrupt the system which could cause accidents and traffic congestion as a result of overloading the network or targeting a vehicle with forged or fake information.


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