Situational awareness in connected and automated vehicle (CAV) systems becomes particularly challenging in the presence of non-line of sight objects and/or objects beyond the sensing range of local onboard sensors. Despite the fact that fully autonomous driving requires the use of multiple redundant sensor systems, primarily including camera, radar, and LiDAR, the non-line of sight object detection problem still persists due to the inherent limitations of those sensing techniques. To tackle this challenge, the inter-vehicle communication system is envisioned that allows vehicles to exchange self-status updates aiming to extend their effective field of view and thus compensate for the limitations of the vehicle tracking subsystem that relies substantially on onboard sensing devices. Tracking capability in such systems can be further improved through the cooperative sharing of locally created map data instead of transmitting only self-update messages containing core basic safety message (BSM) data. In the cooperative sharing of safety messages, it is imperative to have a scalable communication protocol to ensure optimal use of the communication channel. This dissertation contributes to the analysis of the scalability issue in vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communication and then addresses the range issue of situational awareness in CAV systems by proposing a content-adaptive V2X communication architecture. To that end, we first analyze the BSM scheduling protocol standardized in the SAE J2945/1 and present large-scale scalability results obtained from a high-fidelity simulation platform to demonstrate the protocol's efficacy to address the scalability issues in V2X communication. By employing a distributed opportunistic approach, the SAE J2945/1 congestion control algorithm keeps the overall offered channel load within an optimal operating range, while meeting the minimum tracking requirements set forth by upper-layer applications. This scheduling protocol allows event-triggered and vehicle-dynamics driven message transmits that further the situational awareness in a cooperative V2X context. Presented validation results of the congestion control algorithm include position tracking errors as the performance measure, with the age of communicated information as the evaluation measure. In addition, we examine the optimality of the default settings of the congestion control parameters. Comprehensive analysis and trade-off study of the control parameters reveal some areas of improvement to further the algorithm's efficacy. Motivated by the effectiveness of channel congestion control mechanism, we further investigate message content and length adaptations, together with transmit rate control. Reasonably, the content of the exchanged information has a significant impact on the map accuracy in cooperative driving systems. We investigate different content control schemes for a communication architecture aimed at map sharing and evaluate their performance in terms of position tracking error. This dissertation determines that message content should be concentrated to mapped objects that are located farther away from the sender to the edge of the local sensor range. This dissertation also finds that optimized combination of message length and transmit rate ensures the optimal channel utilization for cooperative vehicular communication, which in turn improves the situational awareness of the whole system.


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Graduation Date





Pourmohammadi Fallah, Yaser


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


College of Engineering and Computer Science


Electrical and Computer Engineering

Degree Program

Computer Engineering









Release Date

August 2020

Length of Campus-only Access

1 year

Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Campus-only Access)