In connection with the launch of the all-new Volvo S60 in 2010, Volvo Cars will be unveiling the next generation of preventive safety technology. Collision Warning with Full Auto Brake and Pedestrian Safety. The new safety functions represent the next stage in Volvo Cars’ continuous development of technology to detect risky situations and help the driver avoid accidents.
Collision Warning with Full Auto Brake and Pedestrian Safety consists of a new dual-mode radar unit integrated into the car’s grille, a camera behind the inside rear-view mirror and a central control unit. The radar and camera continuously monitor the road in front of the car. The radar’s task is to detect objects and measure the distance to them. The camera’s function is to determine what type of objects they are.
As before, the system is programmed to respond to cars in front that are at a standstill or moving in the same direction. Thanks to the state-of-the-art radar, which has a far wider field of vision than before, pedestrians about to step into the roadway can be detected early. What is more, the camera has better resolution than in the previous generation, allowing the system to monitor pedestrians’ movement patterns.
In an emergency situation, the driver first gets an audible warning together with a flashing light in the windscreen’s head-up display. In order to prompt an immediate, intuitive reaction, the visual warning is designed to look like a brake light coming on. If the driver does not respond to the warning and the system assesses that a collision is imminent, the car’s brakes are applied with full braking power.
In the EU, the proportion of pedestrians figuring in overall traffic fatalities varies between 10 and 25 percent depending on the country. In the EU countries’ capital cities, 1,560 people died in road accidents in 2007. Of these, 43 percent were pedestrians.
The speed of a car is of considerable significance to the outcome of an accident and the risk for a pedestrian of being killed in an accident at 50 kilometer per hour is 85 percent higher compared to if the speed is 25 kilometer per hour.