[Image Source: Volvo]
According to a study conducted by the University of Michigan using 2008 data from the World Health Organization, 2.1% of deaths in the world are caused by car accidents. A new technology developed by Volvo Cars is seeking a way to help zero this number.
The car manufacturer has been dedicating the last four years to the “Non-Hit Car and Truck” project, which is to create sensors that monitor a 360º view around the car in order to avoid crashes. The project is expected to be finished by December and is being done in collaboration with universities, institutions and the automotive industry.
According to the company, their goal is that by 2020, there will be no more fatal or serious car accidents involving a Volvo. To achieve such an ambitious goal, they worked on developing a cohesive system of detection which reads and puts together all the data captured by sensors installed discreetly around the car. The system provides a seamless 360º view through the fusion of different sensor technologies, such as cameras, radars, laser radars and GPS, generating data that create an overview of the car and the environment around them, identifying potential risks.
[Image Source: Volvo]
Besides the 360-degree view, the project also proposes a maneuver generator, a device that identifies collision-free escape routes in different situations, including the most sudden and unpredictable ones. The system evaluates the conditions surrounding the car and can slow down, break and even steer the vehicle in order to avoid a collision.
“We’ve taken a significant step towards realizing the vision that by 2020 no one should be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo car. The technology is also imperative for the development of self-driving cars, which will be able to automatically steer and brake to avoid collision with any object in any situation. Our primary objective is to focus on preventing different types of accident scenarios. But going forward, we will also continue to work on developing cars that adapt to each individual driver’s unique behavior,” said the project manager Anders Almevad. The project used two test vehicles and released a video showing how the system would work in practice.