Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Toyota has revealed a host of both active and passive safety systems that it is developing for use in its future models. The Japanese company said that it concentrates on protecting both older drivers as well as pedestrians.

If you're wondering why, this is because of the statistics which show that in Japan, more than half of road traffic fatalities are of people aged 65 and above, while pedestrian now account for more fatalities than vehicle occupants.
Toyota said that it is trying to collect data from all over the world. The company recently set up the Collaborative Safety Research in the US to cooperate with North American universities, hospitals and research organizations in gathering data from real-world accidents to improve its testing and products.
The four key safety technologies that Toyota is currently developing are the following:
Pre-Crash Safety (PCS) with collision avoidance assist
This system uses a millimeter-wave radar and camera to monitor the road ahead and if it detects and obstacle and the driver does not apply the brakes, it activates them automatically. PCS monitors a range of factors, such as roadside obstacles and other vehicles and constantly estimates the collision chances. It can also change the course of the vehicle if the driver fails to act, in order to avoid an accident.

Pop-up BonnetToyota is designing the body structures of its vehicles to reduce injury in a collision with a pedestrian utilizing data from crash test dummies and its Total Human Model for Safety virtual models. It has developed a new, pop-up bonnet that automatically increases the space between the pedestrian and the engine, thus limiting injuries. This technology can also be used in cars with a low bonnet line, further untying the hands of bodywork designers.
Emergency Response Technology
Some accidents are caused by drivers having a heart attack or a blackout. Toyota’s new system monitors cardio-vascular functions of the driver through his grip on the steering wheel and detect possible problems. The company has presented the concept to the Japan Medical Congress and will develop it further before bringing it into production.

Adaptive Driving BeamSome of Toyota’s models already have a function when the car switches the front lights automatically from high beam to low beam once a camera detects a vehicle in front or in the opposite side of the road, then turns the high beam back on once the road is clear.
Toyota said it is further developing this system with an adaptive driving beam that shields the high beam so it doesn’t blind other drivers, yet the lights operate at near high-beam level for better illumination of the road ahead.



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