IBM has added to its list of blockchain patents with the latest being the implementation of managing data and interactions for self-driving vehicles (SDVs). The United States Patent and Trademark Office published the patent on April 2.
IBM has previously filed extensive patents for various inventions related to autonomous cars. The multinational giant outlined that a blockchain system could effectively enhance SDV configurations by allowing for robust privacy and information validation.
The implementation would entail a system wherein an SDV interacts and predicts the behavior of the drivers of non-autonomous vehicles nearby.
According to the patent, various parameters can be used to assess nearby drivers’ behaviors by using a wide array of sensor technologies. It also outlines how these can be used to optimize risk assessment based on the predicted and actual maneuvers of nearby vehicles with drivers in them.
“Observing, detecting, and sensing of the driver behavior data can be collected by the in-vehicle sensors of the driver’s vehicle in real-time and uploaded onto a cloud data hub, designated […] as a Mobility Information Hub (MIH), to which the SDV can subscribe to,” the patent outlines.
Blockchain can enhance this complex construction and real-time use of environmental analytics and prediction models by enabling full data functionality while retaining the privacy of others, as per IBM’s proposition.
Sensor data can be logged into a blockchain system, according to IBM, wherein public key infrastructure (PKI) is used to generate ‘the right public-private pair associate to each SDV/driver, wherein each data uploading or accessing transaction is cryptographically signed using private key.’
The system would only allow authorized entities to access the data, according to the patent.
The patent further outlines how an SDV can access the predicted behavior of the nearby drivers in real-time by means of a blockchain client application – by scanning a nearby license plate number, for example.
In October 2018, IBM partnered with supermarket giant Carrefour to implement its food-tracking blockchain. The same year, in November 2018, IBM partnered with Seagate to fight the sale of counterfeit hard drives by using blockchain technology.
In December 2018, a press release was put out which stated that the customs authorities in Saudi Arabia completed their pilot scheme which would link its cross-border trade platform FASAH with IBM and Maersk’s TradeLens blockchain platform.
The tech giant is neck-in-neck with e-commerce platform, Alibaba, with regards to the highest number of patents filed by any global entity.