Over the past few years, Light Emitting Diode (LED) has become very common in automotive lighting due to its long service life, high resistance to vibration, and better safety performance due to its short rise time. A number of existing works use LEDs that already exist in vehicles, such as brake lights, turn signals, and headlamps, to carry out vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communications with visible light communications (VLC). Nonetheless, very few studies derive analytical models for VLC with empirical data obtained from the real world or with realistic assumptions. In addition, experimental works were often conducted in closed environments with lighting systems that are specifically customized, instead of real-life lighting systems. In this paper, we perform an analytical study that attempts to derive VLC channel models in a realistic V2V setting. The proposed model is evaluated against the real-world data obtained with unmodified off-the-shelf scooter taillights, and the results show that the proposed model is able to accurately estimate the received power of the scooter taillight at distances of up to 10 meters. In addition, this paper also discusses several guidelines for modeling VLC radiation behaviors when different types of LED taillights are used. © 2013 IEEE.
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