With increasing dependence on cars in our day to day life, it becomes quite vital to ensure the safety of the driver and passengers. In a move towards this safety, automobile manufacturers have shifted their focus to secure their product (read vehicles) with multiple features that can help avoid accidents owing to negligence of riders. These features are easy to deploy, sophisticated and are also light on the customer’s pockets. Besides, some of these technologies have the potential to revolutionize not just the automotive industry but human transportation in general.
In 2016 Toyota published a patent US20160033964A1, which describes a vehicle control apparatus and vehicle control method that can automatically determine whether or not a driver is in a manual operation acceptance condition. After determining that the driver is not in a manual operation acceptance condition, a notification issuance unit prompts the driver to start the driving operation. The prompt can be a voice notification. Even after sending the notification, if the vehicle control apparatus determines that the driving operation is an inappropriate driving operation, an automatic evacuation unit is configured to evacuate the vehicle automatically.
In 2012, Xingang Xu, published a patent CN202541327 (U) which disclosed an intelligent vehicle mounted alcohol detection and safety control system. The system leveraged the use of a single chip along with an alcohol sensor for judging whether the driver was drunk or not. If the driver was found drunk, the single chip would send a response to the voice module to set off an alarm. Simultaneously, an ignition braking device stops the drunk driver from even starting the vehicle, preventing driving under the influence of alcohol.
Sensors for safe driving
There are three features that can be combined to serve the objective: alcohol detector, password protected speedometer and sleep sensing & alarming in one single module.
- Alcohol detector: Driving under the influence of alcohol can be a fatal threat. An alcohol detection system within the driver’s seating area can help analyse the alcohol content in the driver’s body via a breathalyser sensing system and sound an alarm or lock the car from if it is above a particular threshold. An alcohol sensor deployed on the steering wheel can display the level of alcohol detected by the breathalyser too.
- Digital Vehicle Speedometer with Password Enabled Speed Limit Setting: Over speeding is a prominent cause of road accidents. A password-protected speedometer will ensure that the vehicle cannot exceed the pre-set speed limit. This is especially useful in enabling parental control over children’s driving.
- Sleep Sensing and Alerting System: Accidents caused due to driver drowsiness has been a bone of contention faced an exponential increase. Eye blink sensors can detect the eye movement of the driver to analyse the state of alertness. In case it detects drowsiness, the sensors signal the vehicle to slow down automatically and pull up to the side. Alternatively, an alarm can beep to alert the driver to stay awake.
The novelty in safe road travel lies in connecting the three features in a single module to make road travel safe.
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