We all are driving perfect – others are bastards. Can we do something today that would reduce one of the main root causes for the fatal car accidents – not keeping a safe distance from the preceding car (see statistics under the “Traffic Angel” post)?
There are various futuristic products that you are sure just came out of Si-Fi movie. Can we do a simple solution that would create a basic feedback that would keep others in the safe distance?
Today, there are vehicles with systems that monitor the distance to the preceding car and even reducing a speed if it is less than the accepted one. Can we do it tomorrow without changing the whole world?
The vehicle speed is always changing based on conditions and road. Can we adjust the safe distance according to the speed?
Everything that is related to safety and automation is extremely complicated to approve and drive into the market. Once it is there, its price is high. Can it be a solution, cheap enough to fit the pocket of majority?
We can control a speed of our car, but we cannot do that for all around us. So the basic thing that would help in this case is a FEEDBACK.
The idea is to present simply a stopping distance to following cars to help them to get a visual and clear feedback rather than to expect them to have complex speed control systems.
One of possible basic and simplest products, the sign is projected on the road that is showing the rear zone of the vehicle. The distance, presented by the sigh is changing according to the speed of the car, so taking into account that the following driver is driving with approximately the same speed, it should show his safe stopping distance.
This basic feedback can be projected by LED-based (Laser-based?) lightening system and can come in various flavors.
On top of speed other conditions can be taken – for example the time, so in midnight the distance would be longer (as people are more tired) than at the evening. Also weather conditions (rain, frog, snow) would impact the projected rear zone distance.
The distance is a function of speed and other conditions can be calculated based on d = Tx*Vc, when Tx [1-4] sec based on conditions (usually 2sec) and Vx is a vehicle speed (in [m/sec]). For example V = 100km/h = 27m/s, so if Tx = 2 sec à d = 55m
Adjustments of the product
There might be various adjustments based on budget, required confidence level, automation and style.
Here are couple examples:
- Measurement of the distance to the next car (use of existing distance sensors?) and feedback to driver if the vehicle behind has entered the closed rear zone (visual and/or sound).
- Changing the Rear Zone Visualization pattern once the following vehicle is entering the closed zone (blinking or movement)
- Various visualizations of the signal e.g. Border, Grid, Lanes (presented on the picture above), Moving Rocket Fire (for stylish product – below)
- “Keep Distance” sign
- Different colors e.g. Red, Blue, Yellow, Pink
Simple for installation, It should be also cheap (100-150$ for basic system).
Although it works mainly during the night time – this is also the most important period due to tiredness of people and poor visual conditions.
Drive Safe. Keep distance! 🙂
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