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Photos: Driving safety through tech

Transmitters, sat-nav and VoIP take centre stage at NEC's R&D labs
By Tim Ferguson, Contributor on
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1 of 7 Tim Ferguson/ZDNET

Transmitters, sat-nav and VoIP take centre stage at NEC's R&D labs

silicon.com went along to NEC's R&D labs in Heidelberg, Germany, to see some of the technology it has been developing.

Some of the projects include technology to improve road safety, boost the appeal of IPTV and to protect VoIP networks from attack.

This photo shows the technology behind a car-to-car warning system. There are sat-nav devices at the back with receivers and transmitters on the table in front.

Photo credit: Tim Ferguson

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This is one of the transmitters that can be placed on the side of the road at accident trouble spots. It picks up information on the local road conditions - such as ice or an obstruction - and transmits it to receivers in approaching cars.

Photo credit: Tim Ferguson

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3 of 7 Tim Ferguson/ZDNET

This shows how the transmitter and receivers interact with each other. The blue markers on the side of the road are transmitters, while the coloured circles on the road represent the approaching cars, which can communicate data to each other using the technology.

Photo credit: Tim Ferguson

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This shows the alert which drivers will see displayed on their sat-nav devices, warning of impending hazards.

In this case a sharp right hand corner is ahead and humidity and temperature readings for that part of the road are given.

Photo credit: Tim Ferguson

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This is one of the receivers that sits in the vehicle. The device not only receives data from the transmitter but also sends it to other vehicles up to a certain distance (e.g. 500m) behind - much like a mesh network.

This means information received by the first car approaching can be transmitted to those following, which saves on the energy needed to transfer the data.

Photo credit: Tim Ferguson

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The technology can also be used by organisations such as the police or insurance companies to determine the cause of accidents.

This display shows archived data gathered from a roadside transmitter. If, for example, ice is detected on the road by the device at the time of an incident, this can help in establishing the cause of the accident.

Photo credit: Tim Ferguson

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Pictured here is a setup to demonstrate a system that protects corporate VoIP networks from spam attacks.

It shows an IP phone under attack from an online virus. The computer screen is displaying details of the attacking party which the system is blocking.

There were a number of other technologies on show at the R&D labs, including an internet TV service with an interactive buddy list, as well as 'session mobility' which allows users to switch live applications from one device to another using RFID tags.

Photo credit: Tim Ferguson

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