New traffic light technology being tested by Ford and Jaguar Land Rover

The new system will enable motorists to judge the traffic lights in advance and avoid the red light

We’ve all been there – driving home after a hard day’s work only to find every traffic light you come to turns red!
However, thanks to a group of smart thinking people at Ford and Jaguar Land Rover, this common everyday frustration could become a thing of the past.

New traffic light technology being trialled by Ford and Jaguar Land Rover

Stopping for red traffic lights could become a thing of the past © Copyright Gary and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

The new advanced technology, known as ‘Green Light Optimal Speed Advisory’, won’t magically turn every light in the UK to ‘Go’ but it will be clever enough to alert the driver as to the status of an upcoming traffic light. The driver will then be advised on what speed they should be doing to make sure they approach at just the right time for the red light to turn green. If a stop for a red light is unavoidable, the special device will alert you as to how long you’ll have to wait for the light to change to green.
The new system is currently being tested in the UK by two major car manufacturers and works by using timing information gathered from modern, up-to-date roadside traffic light units. The information is then sent through to the driver whose vehicle is fitted with a special device, enabling them to gauge the best speed to keep to as they approach the lights, allowing time for the red light to change to green – meaning drivers in the very near future could avoid having to stop for one red light on their way home from work!
According to both Ford and Jaguar Land Rover, the new system will not only help to reduce stress and frustration for the driver, it will also aid traffic flow and lower vehicle emissions across the country.
Ford claim that motorists across the UK who drive on a daily basis spend around two days per year sat at red traffic lights. This new technology will allow drivers to react to the colour of the lights as they approach, hopefully illuminating, or at least reducing the time spent waiting at a red light.
Trials are set to continue over the next three years as part of the UK Autodrive Project, with tests being carried out on both public roads and closed circuits in Coventry and Milton Keynes.
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