By Ingmar van der Linden, Market Development Manager, Advanced Connectivity Solutions, Rogers Corp.
The world health organization indicates that road traffic injuries claim more than 1.2 million lives worldwide each year. They are also the main cause of death for young people ages 15 to 29. Almost half of the deaths are among vulnerable road users that have the least protection, such as motorcyclists, cyclists, and pedestrians.
New Car Assessment Programmes (NCAPs) are promoting safer cars to consumers by doing crash tests on dummies in new cars to rate the vehicles’ crash protection; a five star rating represents the top score. There are nine NCAPs or similar bodies around the world. Although all NCAPs use star ratings to rank vehicle safety, five stars does not necessarily represent the same level of car safety in all regions.
Advanced Driver Assistance
Recently, North American and European NCAPs started to promote and/or introduce crash avoidance technologies into their rating schemes. In the European NCAP, a five rating can now only be achieved when cars have an overall good performance in crash protection (passive safety) and are equipped with robust crash avoidance technologies. These so called active safety technologies are enabled by the Advanced Driver Assistance Systems using Radar, Camera, and/or LIDAR sensors.
The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently proposed a new 5-Star Safety Ratings system that will include assessment of crash-avoidance and advanced technologies as well as pedestrian protection. The NHTSA intends to implement these enhancements in the NCAP in 2018, beginning with the 2019 model year.
From 2016, Euro NCAP will expand its safety ratings by including autonomous emergency braking (AEB) technology for pedestrians. Research has shown that fitting effective pedestrian detection systems on passenger cars could prevent one in five fatal pedestrian collisions.
The worldwide leader in Automotive safety systems, Autoliv, showed during their capital market day in 2015 that they expect cars will need to have corner and front radar sensors — plus sensor fusion between radar sensors and stereo or mono cameras — to achieve the Euro NCAP five star safety rating by 2020.
Mercedes Benz new E Class launched during the Detroit Auto Show. It features the latest package of driver assistance systems like Drive pilot, Speed limit pilot, Active lane change assist, and BAS Plus Brake assist.
BAS Plus Brake assist — with cross traffic assist using short-, medium-, and long range radar in combination with a stereo camera — helps you with braking as soon as a risk of collision is detected. Rogers high performance RF antenna materials enable the short-, medium-, and long range radar to detect speed and distance to other road users and obstacles in real time, scanning in all weather conditions. The data of the radar sensors and camera are fused and processed. Based on the data, the driver assistance system can determine a potential collision and then take action.
The functions of the E Class advanced driver assistance systems allow semi-automated driving. Drivers have to keep their hands on the steering wheel at all times to be able to initiate a cross or lane correction.