Ford, the auto manufacturer responsible for creating the first affordable and commercially available car – the Ford Model – is no stranger to innovation. According to a new patent filed by Ford Global Technologies, LLC with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, the auto maker aims to establish a method of car-to-car communications, which transact with cryptocurrency tokens to regulate the flow of traffic.
The patent application asserts that traffic congestion is due to “the psychology of human drivers who focus on their individual travel time preferences,” and the way to alleviate such traffic congestion is with a “Cooperatively Managed Merge and Pass (CMMP)” system. The CMMP system will monitor, record, and evaluate driving behavior data.
The application further explains that such a system would temporarily allow for vehicles to drive at “higher speeds in less-occupied lanes of traffic and also to merge and pass freely when needed.” While other vehicles might “voluntarily occupy slower lanes of traffic” to allow the vehicles that require more urgency to pass. Simply put, crypto would be sent from one vehicle to another to allow a driver who may be in a rush, to transact with another driver who may be out for a leisurely drive and time is not of a concern, thus allowing the rushed driver to reach higher speeds and have a clear path through traffic.
One such example is offered:
“…a driver of a consumer vehicle which is running late for an appointment may request to pass any participating merchant vehicles for a duration of 10 minutes on a particular road or highway for 60 CMMP tokens, at a rate of 10 seconds preferential access per token."
The transactions would be facilitated through CMMP tokens, with the patent outlining how this would work:
"The CMMP system operates with individual token-based transactions, where the merchant vehicles and the consumers' vehicles agree to trade units of cryptocurrency (sometimes referred to as 'CMMP tokens'). The CMMP tokens are used to validate and authorize a transaction in which, at consumer vehicles' request, the merchant vehicles either occupy slower lanes of traffic themselves, or allow the consumer vehicle to merge into their own lane and pass as necessary.”
Such a system would likely do wonders for congested roads during peak traffic hours.
Ford is not the only auto manufacturer working on cryptocurrency-based systems for their vehicles. Earlier in March, Daimler AG, the parent company behind Mercedes Benz, announced a cryptocurrency system for their vehicles, though, in this instance the cryptocurrency is designed to be more of a rewards system for drivers who demonstrate safe and eco-friendly driving behavior.