Delphi to Showcase Single-Sensor Camera with Multiple Safety Features

At the 2007 International Consumer Electronics Show, Delphi Corp. will demonstrate how a single camera can support multiple safety functions. Delphi is exhibiting its technologies in the Las Vegas North Convention Center, Exhibit 5206.

“We are taking advantage of Delphi’s integration expertise to provide vehicle manufacturers with cost-effective, advanced safety technologies that allow increased functionality without adding additional content,” said Beth Schwarting, Delphi Electronics general director of the Safety Systems product business unit. “Our approach allows automakers to meet increasing consumer demand for advanced safety features, at prices vehicle buyers are willing to pay.”

Delphi is demonstrating how a single integrated CMOS (Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor) camera provides multiple safety enhancements at a lower cost than independent systems. Delphi’s expertise and intellectual properties in vision systems hardware and algorithms enables a single camera to provide functions, including smart cruise control and pre-crash system enhancements, with additional features including, lane departure warning, intelligent head light control, active night vision, rain sensing, road sign recognition and pedestrian recognition.

Delphi’s unique approach provides a scalable architecture that allows for a customized feature set using common hardware for automakers. In addition, a single camera also simplifies vehicle packaging while providing multi-system functionality. It also eliminates standalone products competing for limited windshield space.

Featured Delphi technologies enabled by single camera at CES include:

Lane Departure Warning
According to NHSTA data, more than 40 percent of U.S. vehicle-related fatalities (more than 18,000 people) are caused by unintentional lane/road departure. The societal impact of all collisions including unintentional lane departure is more than $230 billion, or $820 per person in the United States. Delphi’s Forewarn Lane Departure Warning system tracks painted lane boundaries and helps alert the driver should the vehicle start to drift out of its lane, helping to greatly reduce one of the largest causes of vehicle crashes.

Rain Sensing
The same camera operates the rain sensing function that activates wipers when moisture is detected on the windshield.

Intelligent Headlight Control
Using the single camera, it automatically activates the high-beams according to lighting and traffic conditions, as well as automatically dim headlights for on-coming traffic and when approaching vehicles from the rear.

Active Night Vision
Active night vision uses near infrared headlamps to illuminate the road scene ahead and the image the camera image is displayed in the vehicle. This system provides more natural looking images to the driver than thermal vision systems and allows non-thermal intense objects like trees and lane markers to be visible. In addition, the system provides high-beam visibility without blinding on-coming traffic.

Pedestrian Recognition
The camera also enables pedestrian recognition, a system that detects and classifies pedestrians. It predicts potential pedestrian impact and activates countermeasures to mitigate injuries. Pedestrian protection technologies are gaining much attention in Europe and other countries with densely populated cities.

Road Sign Recognition
Using the same camera to recognize and read road and traffic signs can alert the drive to varying conditions ahead such as speed limit, school zones, construction zones or curves ahead. Delphi safety and driver convenience products at the show also include:

Forewarn Smart Cruise Control
One of the first suppliers to launch radar based Adaptive Cruise Control systems in 1999; Delphi continues to add features and functionality to its fourth generation Smart Cruise Control including full speed range functionality, stop & go, panic brake assist, automated braking and seat-belt pretensioning.

Pre-Crash Sensing and Resettable Pretensioning Seat Belt Retractor
Delphi’s Resettable Pretensioning Seat Belt Retractor removes slack from the seat belt to improve the occupant’s position in the event of a crash. Delphi’s Pre-Crash Sensing System signals a motorized retractor with pulse width modulator motor control. In case of an accident, the pre-crash sensing feature determines the trajectory of the oncoming target, time of impact, impact velocity and point of impact. The system uses this information to initiate the appropriate safety countermeasures to help protect occupants, such as to pretension the seat belts and active braking. The system can also use seat belt pulses to provide advanced alert to drivers in situations where collisions can be avoided.

Delphi Forewarn(R) Infrared Side Alert System
Motorists changing lanes or engaging in other maneuvers face challenges from blind spots that exist to the sides of most vehicles. While vehicle designers are working to eliminate these blind spots, Delphi’s active safety technologies can help mitigate their impact. Delphi’s Forewarn Infrared Side Alert system helps alert drivers of vehicles in their side blind spots when changing lanes. When a moving vehicle is detected entering the side blind spot, a visual alert is provided via an illuminated icon in the side view mirror.

The system is less expensive than radar and is offered in a small package that can be integrated into side mirrors, taillights or side body fascia. More information: Delphi Corporation (Pink Sheets: DPHIQ).