AACHEN, GERMANY -- To support the development of advanced active safety systems, a consortium of 29 partners has joined forces in a European research project that got underway Jan. 20 at the Ford European Research Center in Germany. 

The project -- Accident Avoidance by Active Intervention of Intelligent Vehicles, or Interactive for short -- will last 42 months. Partners will test the performance of a variety of safety systems, including autonomous braking and steering systems in critical situations. 

Advanced driver assistance systems inform drivers about potentially dangerous situations to provide as much reaction time as possible. Whenever the driver does not react at all or react in time to the warnings provided by the different assistance systems, the collision avoidance subsystem will intervene autonomously. 

In addition to collision avoidance and mitigation systems, new technologies for environmentally sensitive driving will be supported by the project as well. 

The consortium, headed by Ford, consists of seven automotive manufacturers, six suppliers, 14 research institutes and three other stakeholders. The European Commission will cover more than half of the overall budget of 30 million Euros. 

The Interactive project includes the following partners:
Automotive Manufacturers -- Ford Research Center Aachen GmbH, BMW Forschung und Technik GmbH, Centro Ricerche Fiat SCPA, Daimler AG, Volvo Personvagnar AB, Volvo Technology AB, Volkswagen AG. 

Suppliers -- Autoliv, Continental Teves AG & CO. OHG, Delphi Delco Electronics Europe GmbH, Navteq B.V., TRW Limited, Continental Automotive GmbH. 

Research institutes -- Bundesanstalt fuer Strassenwesen, Ceske Vysoke Uceni Technicke v Praze, Chalmers Tekniska Hoegskola AB, Deutsches Zentrum fuer Luft - und Raumfahrt e.V., Fundación Para La Promoción De La Innovación, Investigacion y Desarrollo Tecnológico en la Industria de Automoción de Galicia, Institute of Communication and Computer Systems, Lunds Universitet, Nederlandse Organisatie Voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek - TNO, Rheinisch-Westfaelische Technische Hochschule Aachen, Université Joseph Fourier Grenoble 1, Universitaet Passau, Universita degli Studi di Trento, Valtion Teknillinen Tutkimuskeskus. 

Others -- Allround Team GmbH, Alcor di Giancarlo Alessandretti, European Center for Information and Communication Technologies GmbH.