Continental recently announced it’s development of a stereo camera designed to prevent pedestrian related accidents.
Pedestrian/motor vehicle crashes are a serious problem throughout the world and the United States, especially the Phoenix Valley area. There exists a particular problem with pedestrian deaths and injuries. Specifically, 4,749 pedestrians were reported to have been killed in motor vehicle crashes in the United States in 2003. These deaths accounted for 11 percent of the 42,643 motor vehicle deaths nationwide that year.
When you mix the car heavy culture and geography of the Phoenix Valley area with the perennially warm weather and abundance of outdoor recreation opportunities, Phoenix Arizona pedestrians have a heightened need for safety and awareness. In Germany, the percentage of serious pedestrian injuries jumps from 11 to 50, likely due to the popularity of walking and bicycling, which are both on the rise in the US. But the pedestrian is only one side of the equation. This is where Continental’s stereo camera pedestrian sensor comes into play.
Continental’s system uses two high-resolution cameras working in stereo to detect pedestrians in the vehicle’s path. When a pedestrian is detected in the path of the car, the system effects an emergency stop. The stereo camera not only detects pedestrians, but can determine how far away they are, as well as how tall they are. With multiple cameras working in stereo, Continental’s system essentially creates a 3-dimensional model of people within it’s field of vision.
We are all thinking the same thing: Braking can take a long time. Continental has planned around this. If a sudden brake is not the best way to avoid a pedestrian injury, the system can look within its field of vision to find a course of evasive action, the way a hyper alert and skilled driver would.
While the system is still in research and development, the ability to accurately and reliably detect pedestrians in the manner in which Continental’s system promises to do, creates a safer driving and outdoor recreation environment for all Phoenix Valley residents. Phoenix Valley drivers and pedestrians will be looking forward to it’s unveiling.