Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A life-saving black box for cars

08.06.2005


A car that can automatically alert emergency services in the event of an accident, giving its precise location and the health status of occupants would save thousands of lives each year. Thanks to the work of AIDER such a vehicle is a step closer to becoming reality.



Developed over three years by 10 partners under the European Commission’s IST programme, the AIDER system has been completely tested in the field and, from the car maker’s perspective, contributes towards meeting the requirements for introducing enhanced an in-vehicle emergency call service (eCall), according to AIDER coordinator Silvia Zangherati at the FIAT Research Centre (CRF).

The system developed and validated by the project is one of the most comprehensive created to date. “Essentially it is a black box for cars, which not only records different parameters inside and outside the vehicle but also automatically alerts emergency services in the event of an accident, providing information about the severity of the crash, the number of occupants and their health status,” Zangherati says.


By using mechanical and biomedical sensors as well as cameras to monitor the on-board pre- and post-crash environment and transmit the information wirelessly to a control centre, the system dramatically accelerates and enhances the response of emergency services.

“During trials we found that the system reduces the response time of emergency services by approximately 30 per cent and also increases the effectiveness of their response,” the coordinator notes.

Location information obtained via GPS satellite tracking allows call centre operators to pinpoint the exact location of the vehicle, while biomedical data allows them to determine the severity of occupants’ injuries, helping them decide whether to send a helicopter or an ambulance, and what equipment might be needed. Information about the number of occupants and video footage of their locations inside or outside the vehicle assists paramedics in locating patients who need priority attention.

“The system provides emergency services with all the information they need to respond as effectively as possible, compared to the current situation in which an occupant or a passerby has to make an emergency call and may not be able to give the precise location of the accident or determine the injuries the people involved have sustained,” Zangherati says.

At the heart of the AIDER platform is the impact-resistant black box containing a processing unit, flash memory and a mobile communications system that incorporates GPS tracking. Data is obtained from an exterior front-mounted camera, a 360º degree camera inside the vehicle, mechanical sensors on the front, sides and back to register impact, and biomedical sensors connected to the occupants. “The biomedical sensors could be something the driver or passengers put on when they get into the car or they could be incorporated into a permanently wearable device such as a wristwatch,” Zangherati says.

The data is processed and cyclically stored in the flash memory. If an accident is detected a signal containing all the necessary information and low-resolution video footage is automatically sent via GPRS to a control centre. Operators can also remotely obtain additional information such as higher resolution video images of the exact moment that the accident occurred. A back-up communications system using the COSPAS-SARSAT international search and rescue satellite network can also be employed if GPRS fails, with the project partners having developed an integrated antenna for the black box that is able to transmit and receive over the different communications technologies.

By alerting emergency services immediately after an accident occurs, crash victims will have a better chance of receiving medical attention within the “golden hour,” the hour after a serious injury in which effective treatment can be crucial to patients’ survival.

With more than 1.3 million traffic accidents causing 1.7 million injuries and 40,000 deaths each year in Western Europe, enhancing the response of emergency services would save thousands of lives and would in turn reduce the social and economic impact of road deaths.

In addition, Zangherati notes that the system could be used to reconstruct accidents, helping the police determine who or what was to blame. “Besides the social benefits, there are also commercial ones. Insurance companies, for example, are very interested in seeing systems such as this incorporated into vehicles,” she says.

Tara Morris | alfa
Further information:
http://istresults.cordis.lu/

More articles from Automotive Engineering:

nachricht 3D scans for the automotive industry
16.01.2017 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht Improvement of the operating range and increasing of the reliability of integrated circuits
09.11.2016 | Technologie Lizenz-Büro (TLB) der Baden-Württembergischen Hochschulen GmbH

All articles from Automotive Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>