A Study of the Effect of Looming Intensity Rumble Strip Warnings in Lane Departure Scenarios

University essay from KTH/Skolan för datavetenskap och kommunikation (CSC)

Abstract: In lane departure warning systems (LDWS) it is important that the auditory warning triggers a fast and appropriate reaction from the driver. The rumble strip noise is a suitable warning to alert the driver of an imminent lane departure. A short reaction time is important in lane departure scenarios, where a late response may have fatal consequences. For abstract sounds an increase in intensity can influence the perceived urgency level of the warning, which may also trigger a faster reaction from the listener. In this thesis, the effect of a rumble strip warning with looming (increasing) intensity was analyzed by letting test persons drive a driving simulator and measuring how quickly they reacted to the auditory warning. These results were compared with those for a rumble strip warning with a constant intensity, and two versions of an abstract warning; constant intensity and looming intensity. A survey regarding the perceived urgency, annoyance and acceptance of the warnings was also carried out. The results show no differences in reaction time between the four warning signals. This may be because the test persons expected the warnings, or because of their limited experience. The survey suggests that adding a looming intensity to the rumble strip warning results in a higher urgency, while keeping the annoyance low, which could be of importance to avoid unwanted reactions from the driver.

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