mca 11(1): e2

Research Article

Towards autonomous vehicular clouds

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  • @ARTICLE{10.4108/icst.trans.mca.2011.e2,
        author={Stephan Olariu and Mohamed Eltoweissy and Mohamed Younis},
        title={Towards autonomous vehicular clouds},
        journal={EAI Endorsed Transactions on Mobile Communications and Applications},
        keywords={autonomous systems, cloud computing, cyber-physical systems, resource management, vehicular networks},
  • Stephan Olariu
    Mohamed Eltoweissy
    Mohamed Younis
    Year: 2011
    Towards autonomous vehicular clouds
    DOI: 10.4108/icst.trans.mca.2011.e2
Stephan Olariu1,*, Mohamed Eltoweissy2, Mohamed Younis3
  • 1: Department of Computer Science, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia, USA
  • 2: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, Washington DC, USA
  • 3: Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742, USA
*Contact email:


The dawn of the 21st century has seen a growing interest in vehicular networking and its myriad potential applications. The initial view of practitioners and researchers was that radio-equipped vehicles could keep the drivers informed about potential safety risks and increase their awareness of road conditions. The view then expanded to include access to the Internet and associated services. This position paper proposes and promotes a novel and more comprehensive vision namely, that advances in vehicular networks, embedded devices and cloud computing will enable the formation of autonomous clouds of vehicular computing, communication, sensing, power and physical resources. Hence, we coin the term, autonomous vehicular clouds (AVCs). A key feature distinguishing AVCs from conventional cloud computing is that mobile AVC resources can be pooled dynamically to serve authorized users and to enable autonomy in real-time service sharing and management on terrestrial, aerial, or aquatic pathways or theaters of operations. In addition to general-purpose AVCs, we also envision the emergence of specialized AVCs such as mobile analytics laboratories. Furthermore, we envision that the integration of AVCs with ubiquitous smart infrastructures including intelligent transportation systems, smart cities and smart electric power grids will have an enormous societal impact enabling ubiquitous utility cyber-physical services at the right place, right time and with right-sized resources.