This report summarizes research on a new collision avoidance strategy, the 'virtual bumper.' The research involves
development and simulation testing of the virtual bumper, a two-dimensional control strategy that provides steering,
throttle, and braking actuation to maneuver a vehicle in a dynamic environment with the goal of avoiding obstacles and
other vehicles. The concept applies to both normal and emergency driving conditions. Under all circumstances, the
virtual bumper incorporates vehicle dynamic limits to ensure that the control commands are within safe levels. The
virtual bumper will attempt to avoid a collision and will, at least, minimize the magnitude of an unavoidable collision.
To test the functionality of the virtual bumper, researchers evaluated several driving scenarios. The scenarios consider
both normal driving situations and emergency driving conditions. The normal driving scenarios demonstrated that the
control algorithm operates the vehicle similar to the way a human would. This is important because a comfortable and
predictable (i.e., intuitive) system response is required for achieving driver acceptance. The emergency scenarios
demonstrated that the strategy is capable of reacting appropriately while maintaining safe acceleration/deceleration
levels for the vehicle. This evaluation showed that the virtual bumper can provide safe vehicle control for a broad range
of driving situations.
Schiller, William; Donath, Max.
The Virtual Bumper: A Control Based Collision Avoidance System For Highway Vehicles.
Minnesota Department of Transportation.
Retrieved from the University of Minnesota Digital Conservancy,
Content distributed via the University of Minnesota's Digital Conservancy may be subject to additional license and use restrictions applied by the depositor.