By Tuan Nguyen
Posting in Design
The "left hand drive assistant" uses a combination of three laser scanners, a video camera and GPS to determine if a left turn the driver is about to make is unsafe.
One of the riskiest legal driving maneuvers are left turns where drivers attempt to cut across oncoming traffic.
In these situations, the impetus is put on the driver to judge accurately whether it's safe to make a turn. Now BMW has begun road testing of a driver's assistance technology for cars that can prevent a collision if the driver ends up making a potentially dangerous mistake.
The "left hand drive assistant" uses a combination of three laser scanners, a video camera and GPS to determine if a left turn the driver is about to make is unsafe. When the system senses this, it automatically slams on the brakes and alerts the driver by generating a warning sound accompanied by flashing signals.
Here's a brief rundown of how each component of this innovative safety feature works:
- A video camera installed at the bottom of the car recognizes left turn arrows and lane borders that indicate if the vehicle is in the left turn lane.
- A GPS that can pinpoint the location of a vehicle up to one meter is also used to determine if the vehicle is in a left turn lane.
- Once the detection system confirms that the driver is about to turn left, it activates a laser system that scans up to 100 meters ahead for oncoming traffic.
- The left turn assistant feature is designed to only goes into effect when the vehicle is moving at speeds of up to 6 mph so that accidental braking doesn't occur when the vehicle isn't making a left turn.
BMW's driver assistant is only one of several hi-tech projects in the works that may help reduce car accidents. Back In January, SmartPlanet's Andrew Nusca reported on a "Superstreet" concept for intersections that reduces the likelihood of left-turn accidents by forcing drivers to turn right, then make a U-turn around a broad median to go west.
The U.S. Department of Transportation is also experimenting with a system that uses multi-directional WiFi technology to detect potential collisions and then alert the driver with a series of beeping noises and flashing red lights. And for those who think it's probably best to take human drivers out of the equation entirely, Google has developed self-driving cars that may soon become street legal in Nevada.
While these new ideas hold promise for a smarter and safer transportation experience, it does beg the question: are we putting too much faith in the hands of technology?
I'd be curious to hear what SmartPlanet readers think.
(via BMW Blog)
Related on SmartPlanet:
- Smart car WiFi system can prevent car accidents
- New car technology can stop drunks from driving
- SMARTwheel invention may prevent distracted driving
- New smartphone innovations may improve driving smarts
- Video: smart navigation system turns car dashboard into interactive 3-D display
- Video: a mind-controlled car
May 18, 2011
Keep up the best work guys, nice posts are here to get more benefits. http://automotorinsure.com/car-insurance-quotes/
Hi guys, the articles written in this blog sites, these are truly amazing regarding people knowledge well. http://automotorinsure.com/cheap-car-insurance/
The quality of your blogs and conjointly the articles and price appreciating. http://www.national.co.uk/branch-662-Maidstone.aspx
that is truly efficient man when someone is taking steps to make the roads and cars safe. I seriously feel like honoring them with some sort of awards. http://www.national.co.uk/branch-592-Manchester-(Chester-Road-M32).aspx
Proper orientation, responsible driving as well as the concern towards other road users and pedestrians. It is good to know that one of the world's most trusted car manufacturer (BMW) has come up a technological device to assist drivers in safe road usage. While there are those who drive irresponsibly like that of DUI/DWI and may lead to charges (http://www.forrestcriminallaw.com - for more details regarding legal implications) , we are fortunate that car companies are doing their part in coming up with devices to help us reach our destinations without the worry of getting into unfortunate events such as accidents.
At the end of the day, the most important safety device in the car should remain the driver. Well trained proficient drivers always did well even before these new inventions. http://www.dacsandatphanrang.com
As interesting and potentially useful as these devices are, I sincerely hope that this technology is not being used to make cars "idiot-proof". At the end of the day, the most important safety device in the car should remain the driver. Well trained proficient drivers always did well even before these new inventions. I truly hope that quality driver training does not suffer as a result of these new technologies.
...like cruise controls that keep adequate space between you and the car in front of you. Unfortunately, auto makers have been hesitant to deploy these technologies for liability reasons. Sooner or later, one of these devices will fail, and there will be an accident, and the auto maker will be held responsible. Never mind that deploying these technologies would reduce accidents at least 100-fold.
Yes, the driver should be, but there's too many that are some combination of poorly trained, not proficient, not attentive, inebriated, overly aggressive or overly cautious. There's no practical alternative to owner operated cars for most of the USA. So some form of automation in high traffic, accident prone areas may be the only realistic way of bringing down the collision rate in those areas.
A parallel might be found in aviation. Even entry-level trainers now have technology on board that even most military and commercial jets did not have only a decade ago. As aircraft have become more technologically advanced recently, pilot trainees are now being educated more in "systems management" than in "stick & rudder" and navigation skills. The result has been pilots who spend more time pushing buttons than actual flying, and skills are deteriorating, if they are even fully developed at all. Will the same happen to automobiles? We may go through a rough transition between now, and an age of fully automated automobiles where there are no drivers, and only passengers.