i-DREAMS Project

Organisation: i-DREAMS Consortium
Date of Launch: May 2019
Date Uploaded: 21 July 2021

i-DREAMS is a 3-year project funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme which aims to set up a platform to define, develop, test and validate a ‘Safety Tolerance Zone’ to prevent drivers from getting too close to the boundaries of unsafe operation by mitigating risks in real-time and after the trip.

The acronym “i-DREAMS” stands for a smart Driver and Road Environment Assessment and Monitoring System. The i-DREAMS consortium consists of 13 partners, researchers as well as industry partners, from 8 different countries.

New opportunities to tackle road safety
Several factors of driver state negatively impact road safety, such as distraction (in-vehicle or external), fatigue and drowsiness, health concerns (e.g. illness, frailty, cognitive state) and extreme emotions (e.g. anxiety, stress, anger). Moreover, differences in socio-cultural factors are still among the main determinants of road risks. At the same time, technological developments make massive and detailed operator performance data easily available. For example via new in-vehicle sensors that capture detailed driving style and contextual data. This creates new opportunities for the detection and design of customised interventions to mitigate the risks, increase awareness and upgrade driver performance, constantly and dynamically. The optimal exploitation of these opportunities is the challenge that i-DREAMS faces.

Project objectives
The objective of this project is to setup a framework for the definition, development, testing and validation of a context-aware ‘safety tolerance zone’ for on-road driving, within a smart Driver and Road Environment Assessment and Monitoring System (i-DREAMS). Taking into account, on the one hand, driver-related background factors (age, driving experience, safety attitudes and perceptions, etc.) and real-time risk-related physiological indicators (e.g. fatigue, distraction, tress, etc.), and on the other hand, driving task-related complexity indicators (e.g. time of day, speed, traffic intensity, presence of vulnerable road users, adverse weather, etc.) a continuous real-time assessment will be made to monitor and determine if a driver is within acceptable boundaries of safe operation (i.e. safety tolerance zone).

Moreover, safety-oriented interventions will be developed to prevent drivers from getting too close to the boundaries of unsafe operation and to bring back the driver into the safety tolerance zone. These interventions will be composed of both real-time interventions, i.e. in-vehicle while travelling, and other interventions aimed at enhancing the knowledge, attitudes, perceptions and behavioural reaction of drivers with respect to safety-related technologies, situations and behaviours. Application areas will include: new road safety interventions, improved driver well-being and transfer of control between human and vehicle.

Initial testing will take place in a driving simulator environment after which promising interventions will be tested and validated under real-world conditions in a testbed consisting of 600 drivers in total across 5 EU countries. Market roadmaps will be developed to support smooth transition of the investigated technologies to the market and experience from use cases in different European countries will be used to disseminate best practices.

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