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2015 Volvo XC90 safety tech previewed [video]

Six new technologies to be implemented

Volvo is previewing several new safety technologies for the upcoming 2015 XC90.

The next generation of the Volvo XC90 has been confirmed for a late 2014 launch as a 2015 model year. Some of the safety technologies previewed in these videos will be available for the new SUV.

One of the newly-developed systems will be Pedestrian Detection In Darkness which will allow the car to detect objects ahead (vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists, etc.) even in the dark. This will work by showing a warning and then if the driver doesn't respond the system will automatically brake the car to prevent an accident.

Road Edge and Barrier Detection With Steer Assist is similar to a lane-departure warning system as it can detect if the car is about to drive off the road edge. If this happens, it will automatically straighten its path by making adjustments to steering. This system will work even on roads without side markings. It has been confirmed for the next-gen XC90 and will encompass a forward-looking camera and radar to monitor the road edge.

Adaptive Cruise Control With Steer Assist will be available on the 2015 XC90 and will help the car stay in lane and also follow the rhythm of the traffic.

Animal Detection will also be implemented after the launch of the XC90 and will be able to brake the car in daylight and dark to avoid a collision with an animal.

Car 2 Car Communication will become available starting 2016 and is based on communication between transmitters in vehicles and the road infrastructure (traffic lights, road signs).

Lastly, Volvo demonstrated in June an Autonomous Parking system which will eventually allow the driver to get out of the car and through a smartphone app "tell" the vehicle to park itself. It is important to mention the system won't work on all car parks as it will rely on communication between the vehicle and the car park infrastructure to detect an empty spot. This system can automatically avoid pedestrians or objects detected in the car park.

Further details can be found in the attached press release.

Source: Volvo
Published Jul 5, 2013 11:40 am By Adrian Padeanu

Volvo Car Group reveals a number of user-friendly safety and support technologies that will be introduced in the All-New Volvo XC90 at the end of 2014 in Europe.

The new technologies for the upcoming Volvo XC90 were tested by a number of international media representatives over the past week.

“When the first XC90 was introduced in 2002, it featured a number of ground-breaking safety features, including a world-first solution that helps prevent rollovers.

By revealing a number of systems for the next-generation XC90, we once again confirm our leadership in automotive safety,” says Thomas Broberg, Senior Safety Advisor Volvo Car Group.

One such innovation is Animal Detection, a world first that detects and automatically brakes for animals both in daylight and in the dark. The technology, which is designed to help the driver avoid accidents or reduce the speed of impact, will be introduced some time after the All-New XC90 arrives at the end of 2014 in Europe.

At the media event, Volvo Car Group also demonstrated other features that are part of the continuous aim to bring the number of people killed and seriously injured in new Volvo cars down to zero by 2020.

Car 2 Car communication enables vehicles to communicate with each other and with the traffic environment, opening up fantastic possibilities. Vital information can be shared and exchanged – creating a more comfortable and safer drive.

The technology is based on communication between transmitters in vehicles and the road infrastructure, such as road signs and traffic lights.

In addition, Autonomous Parking is a Volvo concept technology that allows a car to find and park in a vacant space by itself, allowing the driver to leave the vehicle at the entrance to the car park.

Combining autonomous driving with detection and auto brake for other objects makes it possible for the car to interact safely with other cars and pedestrians in the car park. The speed and braking are adapted for smooth integration in the parking environment.

“Our approach is based on autonomously driven cars being able to move safely in environments with non-autonomous vehicles and unprotected road users,” says Thomas Broberg.

The new technologies in detail are as follows:

Pedestrian Detection in darkness
According to STRADA (Swedish TRaffic Accident Data Acquisition), 44 percent of all the pedestrian fatalities occurred in darkness, at dusk or dawn. In the United States, the traffic fatality rate is 3-4 times higher in darkness (VTI).

As the leader in automotive safety, Volvo Cars was the first in the industry with detection and autobrake technologies, from the first-generation brake support in 2006 to Pedestrian Detection with full autobrake in 2010, and the latest technology Pedestrian and Cyclist Detection in 2013.

Now, Volvo Cars presents another world first by making the detection and autobrake technology work effectively also when driving in darkness. The technology includes detection and autobrake for other vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists.

“The camera technology in today’s cars works at dusk and dawn, but it is limited when driving at night. Now, we cover the whole span from dusk to dawn by a smarter and faster high-sensitive camera combined with advanced exposure control,” says Thomas Broberg.

The new functionality will be introduced in the all-new Volvo XC90 by the end of 2014.

Animal Detection
Accidents involving wild animals are a major international traffic problem. In Canada, about 40,000 such accidents leading to vehicle damage are reported every year. Sweden reported about 49,000 animal collisions in 2012. Of these 6,000 were collisions with moose.

Collision mitigation for animals is a world first. The technology detects and automatically brakes for animals both in daylight and in the dark. Animal Detection will be integrated in the new car generation some time after the introduction of the all-new Volvo XC90.

“It is a huge challenge to detect what nature has done its best to conceal. Initially, we are focusing on large animals as they cause the most damage and the most severe injuries,” says Thomas Broberg.

Accidents with wild animals often take place at cruising speeds. The risk of severe injuries in a collision with a moose is over 70 percent if the accident occurs at 100km/h. If the collision speed is reduced by braking to below 70km/h, the risk of severe injuries is significantly lower.

Animal Detection technology is designed to help the driver avoid the accident or reduce the speed of impact. The active and passive safety systems cooperate in order to help minimise the consequences.

Road edge and barrier detection with steer assist
Studies show that many accidents take place in uncritical traffic situations and good weather conditions due to driver distraction, drowsiness or illness.

Approximately 25 percent of all accidents in Volvo Cars’ statistical accident database are accidents with an initial road departure. Two out of three of these occur on roads with speed limits of 70km/h or more. In Sweden, road departures cause 53 per cent of all traffic fatalities and 42 per cent of all severe injuries. Half of all traffic fatalities in the United State are road departure accidents (NHTSA).

Road edge and barrier detection with steer assist helps the driver avoid accidental road departures.

The technology detects if the car is about to drive off the road and autonomously applies steering torque to bring the vehicle back on track. The technology will be introduced in the All-New Volvo XC90 by the end of 2014.

“The autonomous steering intervention is designed to help the driver avoid road departures, which often have very severe consequences. More than half of all traffic fatalities in Sweden are caused by single vehicle accidents,” says Thomas Broberg.

A forward-looking camera and radar cooperate to monitor the road edge and different kinds of road barriers. The technology acts immediately if the driver shows signs of unintentionally drifting too close to the road edge.

“Being able to monitor where the physical road ends is a world first. This means that the technology also works on roads without side markings,” says Thomas Broberg.

Adaptive Cruise Control with steer assist
A car with adaptive cruise control and collision warning cuts the risk of colliding with the vehicle in front on a motorway by up to 42 percent (Euro-FOT study 2012). Slow-moving traffic is part of urban commuting. The average American spends more than 100 hours a year commuting to work, according to the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey. This is more than the average two weeks of vacation time (80 hours) that many Americans have per year.

Adaptive Cruise Control with steer assist helps the driver stay in the lane and follow the rhythm of the traffic. The new system, whereby the car automatically follows the vehicle ahead, will be introduced in the All-New Volvo XC90 by the end of 2014.

“Distraction and inattentiveness are the most common cause of accidents in modern traffic. This technology makes driving safer and more relaxed in monotonous stop-and-go traffic,” explains Thomas Broberg.

Adaptive Cruise Control with steer assist is an evolution of the current Adaptive Cruise Control and Lane Keeping Aid technology. The Adaptive Cruise Control enables safe, comfortable driving by automatically maintaining a set gap to the vehicle ahead, at the same time as the steering is controlled automatically.

The driver activates the ACC with steer assist by pushing a button. Using data from a camera and radar sensors, the car can follow the vehicle in front. The engine, brakes and steering respond automatically.

“Making the car automatically follow the vehicle ahead in the same lane is the first step towards cars driving autonomously. However, the driver can always override the system and take back control of the car at any time,” says Thomas Broberg.

Car 2 Car Communication
In the United States, 6 percent of all accidents and 3 percent of all fatalities and are caused by slippery road conditions (NHTSA). Of all accidents in the Volvo Cars’ database, 6-7 percent occur in slippery road conditions. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in the United States, 10 percent of all traffic fatalities at intersections are the result of red light violations. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reports that half of the people killed in red-light violation crashes are not the signal violators. They are drivers and pedestrians hit by the vehicle that drove through the red light.

Enabling vehicles to communicate with each other, and with the traffic environment, opens up fantastic possibilities. Vital information can be shared and exchanged – creating a more comfortable and safer drive.

Volvo Cars has signed a memorandum of understanding with the members of the Car 2 Car Communication Consortium regarding the implementation of standardised technology for communication between cars from 2016 onwards. The aim is for inter-car communication to function between all cars, irrespective of make.

The technology is based on communication between transmitters in vehicles and the road infrastructure, such as road signs and traffic lights.

“There is considerable potential in this area as well as opportunities for many benefits in many spheres over and above road safety, such as a more uniform flow of traffic and additional comfort for road users,” says Thomas Broberg.

Examples of application areas for new Car 2 Car technology currently include:

Green Light Optimum Speed Advisory
Via a transmitter in the traffic light, information is generated regarding the optimum speed for a car to maintain in order to pass through a succession of green lights, thus avoiding unnecessary braking for red. At red lights, the driver can also receive information about how long it will be before the light turns green.

Weather and road condition Information
Issues a warning about local bad weather such as heavy rain, snowfall or icy roads. It is also possible to transmit information about local icy or slippery road patches from one car to other vehicles.

Emergency Vehicle Warning
Alerts the driver to the presence of nearby emergency vehicles, allowing him or her to create free passage well in advance and without being taken by surprise.

This can be of benefit in the evening and at night in urban areas where emergency vehicles use their sirens more sparingly out of consideration for nearby residents, and also if loud music is playing in the car.

Emergency Brake Warning
Vehicles that brake hard on the road can create dangerous situations for other road users. Car 2 Car warns if a vehicle further ahead suddenly slows down.

Slow or Broken Down Vehicle Warning
Slow or broken-down vehicles in the roadway can transmit a warning to other road users. Receiving information well in advance can cut the risk of unpleasant surprises in traffic and thus reduce accidents.

Road Works Warning
Alerts the driver to road works. Construction vehicles and heavy equipment can transmit information to vehicles well in advance of the site. Drivers can thus receive information about changed speed limits and altered routes near the worksite. The system can also keep the driver informed about the remaining distance before the end of a long roadwork zone.

Traffic Jam Ahead Warning
Alerts the driver to traffic stops or tailbacks. Since vehicles to the rear are alerted that there is a stop further ahead, there is less risk of accidents.

In-Vehicle Signage
Car 2 Car provides information about regular and temporary speed limits. This information is provided by communication units along the road that can pass on information about parameters such as road signs and their location on the route.

Motorcycle Approaching Indication
Motorcyclists are among the most vulnerable road users and in order to improve safety, Car 2 Car informs other road users if there is a motorcycle nearby.

Red Light Violation Warning
Traffic lights that communicate with cars make it possible to alert a driver who has not noticed a red light, for instance by activating a prominent sound and light signal in the car. This technology also makes it possible to warn a driver who is going through a green light about another vehicle that is running a red light and thereby about to cross his/her path by mistake.

Autonomous Parking
Autonomous Parking is a concept technology that relieves the driver of the time-consuming task of finding a vacant parking spot. The car finds and parks in a vacant space by itself, allowing the driver to leave the vehicle at the entrance of the parking lot.

Vehicle 2 Infrastructure technology, in other words transmitters in the road infrastructure, informs the driver when the service is available. The driver uses a mobile phone application to activate the Autonomous Parking and then leaves the car.

The vehicle uses sensors to localise and navigate to a free parking spot. The procedure is reversed when the driver comes back to pick up the car.

Combining autonomous driving with detection and auto brake for other objects makes it possible for the car to interact safely with other cars and pedestrians in the car park. Speed and braking are adapted for smooth integration in the parking environment.

“Our approach is based on autonomously driven cars being able to move safely in environments with non-autonomous vehicles and unprotected road users,” says Thomas Broberg.

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Comments (1)

 tbrodie tbrodie
Interesting stuff to be sure, now if only I could get the dealer to fix the spastic window on my wife's XC60R, I'd be impressed.
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July 7, 2013 3:31 pm