Request for Proposal: Road Conditions Measurement Technology in Front of Vehicle, $300K Up For Grabs


Nine Sigma, representing a leading automobile manufacturer, seeks technology for real-time measurement and/or estimation of road conditions a few meters or more in front of a moving vehicle using devices that can be mounted on a vehicle.


Contract Development, Joint Development, Licensing


Phase 1: Technology Development – About 2 years

Phase 2: Development for Commercialization – 2 years


Up to $300K for the first year

Details to be Discussed


Requirement for more precise drive control, based on road conditions is increasing in order to improve driving safety. The client’s target to achieve an advanced drive control system based on road conditions not yet driven on.


Technologies to measure road conditions have been developed through various approaches, such as using imaging technologies. However, there are still many challenges to realize the robustness that is not affected by weather conditions or hours of the day and to measure road conditions in the distance. Meanwhile, recently similar technologies are developed to realize automated driving, driving assistance, and for maintenance of roads.


Believing that potentially promising technology may exist somewhere in the world, the client has decided to issue this open request in order to accelerate the solution development.

Key Success Criteria

Ultimate Goal (Requirements to be achieved in two years)

  • Road conditions to be measured / estimated: The client aims to identify how slippery tires will become on the road. Therefore, the technology must identify the following road conditions.
    • Dryness, wetness, snow, ice, sand, puddle of water, etc.
  • Distance of measurement / estimation: Five meters or more ahead from a moving vehicle, preferably with a goal of 25 meters ahead
  • Precision of measurement / estimation: About 95%
  • Robustness: The technology must be able to provide high-accuracy measurement regardless of the hour of day or weather conditions
  • Conditions for method of measurement / estimation
    • Able to measure using devices that can be mounted on a vehicle
    • Able to provide real-time measurement while automobile is moving


This request welcomes proposals on a variety of types of technologies, including technologies based on unique sensors, technologies based on unique data processing and common sensors, and technologies based on both unique sensors and unique data processing.

Possible Approaches

Anticipated approaches include, but are not limited to, any or combination of the following:

  • Use of visible light, near infrared light, infrared light, etc.
  • Use of radar (e.g. laser radar, millimeter wave radar)
  • Data processing technologies, such as the extract of feature quantity (e.g. algorithm, software)
Approaches not of interest

The following approach is out of the scope:

  • Technologies that use information from outside the moving vehicle, such as inter-vehicle communication and use of sensors installed along and around roads
Preferred Collaboration types
  • Joint Development
  • Technology Licensing
Items to be submitted

Assumed Process of The Project

The client will review submitted proposals and possibly ask clarifying questions before selecting the most suitable candidates for collaboration. The client will select the best candidate(s) through evaluations. During the selection process, the client may execute non-disclosure agreements (NDA) with selected respondent(s), seek further information disclosure, and discuss specific development targets or potential opportunities.

The client will execute necessary agreement(s) with the selected respondent(s) and move to the advanced development phase. Specifics of any collaboration will be determined through consultation with the concerned parties.


Recommended Matters to be Listed on The Proposal Letter

Responses will use the Proposal Template which is linked to the “attachments”, and include the following items:

  • The overview of the proposed technology (overview, characteristics, principle).
  • The uniqueness of the proposed technology.
  • Development stage
  • Current performances
    • Road conditions that can be measured and estimated
    • Distance that can be measured and estimated
    • Precision of the measurement and estimation
    • Robustness
    • Details of the device (e.g. outline, size, areas to be installed, the number of necessary devices)
  • Challenges as of today and future development plans
  • Achievements so far (research papers, patents, additional information to demonstrate research and development capability, etc.).
  • Overview of proposed team/organization

How To Submit Your Proposal:

To submit your proposals, CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

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