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Originally posted by Phugedaboudet
would we even hear about it if it wasn't a Senator or some "elite" who encountered this? Will a law banning such boxes extend to the rest of us or just the "ruling class"?
Should such boxes be installed without owner knowledge? no. Should there be an option to install or enable them if the owner agrees? why not. Should Ford engineers get valuable data from me without paying for it? hell no. My car, my data.
OBDII is a very sophisticated and capable system for detecting emissions problems. But when it comes to getting motorists to fix emission problems, it’s no more effective than OBDI. Unless there’s some means of enforcement, such as checking the MIL light during a mandatory inspection, OBDII is just another idiot light.
Currently under development are plans for OBDIII, which would take OBDII a step further by adding telemetry. Using miniature radio transponder technology similar to that which is already being used for automatic electronic toll collection systems, an OBDIII-equipped vehicle would be able to report emissions problems directly to a regulatory agency. The transponder would communicate the vehicle VIN number and any diagnostic codes that were present. The system could be set up to automatically report an emissions problem via a cellular or satellite link the instant the MIL light comes on, or to answer a query from a cellular, satellite or roadside signal as to its current emissions performance status.
What makes this approach so attractive to regulators is its effectiveness and cost savings. Under the current system, the entire vehicle fleet in an area or state has to be inspected once every year or two to identify the 30% or so vehicles that have emissions problems. With remote monitoring via the onboard telemetry on an OBDIII-equipped vehicle, the need for periodic inspections could be eliminated because only those vehicles that reported problems would have to be tested.
On one hand, OBDIII with its telemetry reporting of emission problems would save consumers the inconvenience and cost of having to subject their vehicle to an annual or biennial emissions test. As long as their vehicle reported no emission problems, there’d be no need to test it. On the other hand, should an emissions problem be detected, it would be much harder to avoid having it fixed—which is the goal of all clean air programs anyway. By zeroing in on the vehicles that are actually causing the most pollution, significant gains could be made in improving our nation’s air quality. But as it is now, polluters may escape detection and repair for up to two years in areas that have biennial inspections. And in areas that have no inspection programs, there’s no way to identify such vehicles. OBDIII would change all that.
According to Mark Carlock with California’s Air Resources Board, the technology exists now to make OBDIII possible. "The idea is to streamline the inspection process by only inspecting those vehicles that really need it." Carlock says the technology to do so is "no big deal." But he concedes that it would be the model year 2000 at the soonest before OBDIII might actually be required on new vehicles.
A prototype system built by GM Hughes Electronics has already been evaluated by ARB that uses a roadside transmitter to interrogate vehicles as they pass by. The system uses ultra low power 10 milliwatt receiver stations and 1 milliwatt transmitters (which is about 1,000 times less power than a typical cellular telephone) with a broadcast frequency of 915 Mhz. The system is reportedly capable of retrieving information from 8 lanes of bumper-to-bumper traffic whizzing by at speeds up to 100 mph!
When the vehicle receiver hears the query signal from a stationary or portable roadside transmitter, it transmits back an answer in the form of the vehicle’s 17-digit VIN number plus an "okay" signal or any trouble codes that may be present. The information can then be used to identify vehicles that are in violation of clean air statutes so a notice can be sent that repairs and/or smog testing is required. Or, the information could be used on the spot to identify vehicles for a pullover roadside emissions check or issuing an emissions citation.
The projected cost of such a system would be $50 per vehicle, says Carlock, based on similar transponders that are in use for electronic toll collecting. The transponders are about the size of a small calculator.
The same basic approach could also be used with existing cellular phone links (local station networks) and/or satellite systems. To keep motorists from tampering with or disabling their telemetry systems, vehicles could be interrogated randomly or on a scheduled basis to monitor their condition. The OBDIII telemetry could also be combined with global positioning system (GPS) technology to document or monitor the whereabouts of vehicles.
Orbiting 11,000 miles above the earth’s surface are 24 military satellites that make up the Navstar global positioning system. By timing radio signals from these satellites, the position of a vehicle, boat or plane anywhere on the earth can be fixed within a few meters. The GPS system is currently used by many fleets for tracking the whereabouts of their vehicles as well as by onboard navigation systems for pinpointing a vehicle’s location on an electronic map.
The advantages of using a satellite based telemetry system for OBDIII rather than a roadside system are:
Greater coverage of the entire vehicle population for more accurate surveillance. Vehicles could be monitored and queried no matter where they were, even while sitting in a garage or driveway. There’d be no way to avoid the watchful eye of the emissions police.
Being able to locate vehicles that are in violation of clean air statutes, either for "demographic studies" or to track down and arrest violators.
Being able to monitor the whereabouts of vehicles for purposes other than emissions surveillance such as recovering stolen vehicles (like today’s LoJack anti-theft system), keeping tabs on suspected drug dealers, gang members and other undesirables.
Being able to disable vehicles that belong to emission scofflaws by transmitting a secret code. Law enforcement officers might also be able to use such a code to disable a vehicle fleeing from a crime scene or one that belonged to someone with a backlog of unpaid traffic violations.
The specter of having Big Brother in every engine compartment and driving a vehicle that rats on itself anytime it pollutes is not one that would appeal to many motorists. So the merits of OBDIII would have to be sold to the public based on its cost savings, convenience and ability to make a real difference in air quality. Even so, any serious attempt to require OBDIII in the year 2000 or beyond will run afoul of Fourth Amendment issues over rights of privacy and protection from government search and seizure. Does the government have the right to snoop under your hood anytime it chooses to do so, or to monitor the whereabouts of your vehicle? These issues will have to be debated and resolved before OBDIII stands a chance of being accepted. Given the current political climate, such drastic changes seem unlikely.
Another change that might come with OBDIII would be even closer scrutiny of vehicle emissions. The misfire detection algorithms currently required by OBDII only watch for misfires during driving conditions that occur during the federal driving cycle, which covers idle to 55 mph and moderate acceleration. It does not monitor misfires during wide open throttle acceleration. Full range misfire detection will be required for 1997 models. OBDIII could go even further by requiring "fly-by-wire" throttle controls to reduce the possibility of misfires on the coming generation of low emission and ultra low emission vehicles.
So until OBDIII winds its way through the regulatory process, all we have to worry about is diagnosing and repairing OBDII-equipped vehicles and all the non-OBD vehicles that came before them.
Originally posted by marg6043
You know how abuses may come? in the way of higher prices on car insurances when they find you if you are a high risk driver.
Originally posted by esdad71
and ON-star. It is in all gm cars and luxury vehciles, even if it is not activated. Your vehicle can be stopped for 1000's of miles away.