In-vehicle Navigation Systems


Sat-Navs are very popular devices that help us to plot the quickest and shortest route to our destination. But what if these devices had a setting that let us choose the least stressful route?

Researchers from SiDE’s Inclusive Transport team are investigating how in-vehicle navigation systems can be improved to meet the needs of older drivers. This research takes the form of focus groups, data collection, travel diaries and observations in the car and the simulator.

Older drivers were asked about their needs and their concerns, and asked to keep a diary of their experiences during a two-week trial of a Sat-Nav. Researchers have identified a reliance on the audio information over the visual display, and a tendency to map out a route more studiously before setting off.

The aim is to devise and test prototypes and modifications, such as a device that guides users by landmark rather than distance, and may ask you to turn left at the church rather than in 300 yards. Another is a Sat-nav that helps drivers calculate a route that is less stressful, avoiding certain roads, certain traffic conditions, and right turns without a traffic signal that may require motorists to find the right gap between cars.

Using these prototypes, SiDE is looking to limit exposure to situations that may make some drivers nervous, such as built-up areas, numerous road signs or right turns across traffic.

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• Emmerson C, Guo W, Blythe PT, Namdeo A, Edwards S. Folk in the road: In-vehicle navigation systems and older drivers. Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour 2013, 21, 173-180.
• Emmerson C, Guo AW, Blythe PT, Namdeo A, Edwards SJF. In-vehicle navigation systems and older adults.In: 19th ITS World Congress. 2012, Vienna, Austria.
• Emmerson C, Guo AW, Blythe PT, Nandeo A, Edwards SJF. In-vehicle navigation: The Perspective of Older Drivers. In: UTSG Annual Conference. 2012, Aberdeen, UK.
• Edwards SJF, Guo AW, Brake JF. Safe Driving for Older People: How In-Vehicle Technology can keep people on the Road. In: RAatE Conference. 2010, Warwick, UK.
• Guo AW, Brake JF, Edwards S, Blythe PT, Fairchild RG. The application of in-vehicle systems for elderly drivers. European Transport Research Review 2010, 2(3), 165-174.

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