Traffic and navigation solutions provider TomTom has launched a new technology for automated vehicles, TomTom RoadCheck, which allows carmakers to decide where it is safe for drivers to activate the automated driving functions of their vehicles.

Automated driving can be unsafe during situations such as extreme weather conditions, in tunnels and in changing environments such as during roadworks.

RoadCheck’s technology enables carmakers to use TomTom’s high-definition (HD) map data.

The technology determines the operational design domain (ODD) of their vehicles’ automated driving functions and informs them about the management of these functions safely.

TomTom’s vehicle automation portfolio now features technologies, including the TomTom HD Map, the TomTom ADAS Map, TomTom AutoStream, TomTom Vehicle Horizon and TomTom RoadCheck.

TomTom RoadCheck is scheduled to be deployed in a production model in the US next year.

TomTom Autonomous Driving head Willem Strijbosch said: “By enabling carmakers to control where automated driving functions can be activated, TomTom is addressing a critical industry challenge that has been highlighted by our partners and customers.

“TomTom RoadCheck, an industry first technology, will make safe autonomous driving a reality sooner. With the addition of TomTom RoadCheck, we have become the first to offer carmakers a complete mapping service for safe automated driving.”

In July, TomTom secured a global multi-year contract from Ford to power its next-generation SYNC connected vehicle technology with its real-time traffic service.

Under the agreement, TomTom agreed to offer real-time traffic information through TomTom Traffic to Ford drivers to enable them to make informed decisions to reduce their travel time.