AACHEN, GERMANY -- Automated collision avoidance is several steps closer to reality. At a demonstration event held here on Wednesday, ZF Friedrichshafen AG and Wabco Holdings revealed a prototype collision avoidance technology for commercial vehicles called Evasive Maneuver Assist.
EMA leverages the combined capabilities of Wabco's OnGuardActive radar-only collision mitigation system along with its proven electronic braking system (EBS), advanced emergency braking system (AEBS), electronic stability control (ESC) and vehicle dynamics control systems, with ZF's electro-hydraulic ReAx power steering system.
A radar sensor identifies moving or stationary vehicles ahead and alerts the driver via visual, audio and haptic signals (moderate brake applications) of an impending rear-end collision. If the driver determines that the system cannot avoid a rear-end collision by driver-initiated or autonomous braking alone, EMA engages to help the driver steer safely around the obstructing vehicle and to bring truck and trailer to a safe and complete stop.
"Today's Evasive Maneuver Assist prototype demonstration is a powerful example of Wabco's and ZF's leadership in developing advanced safety technologies for commercial vehicles," said Jacques Esculier, chairman and CEO of Wabco. "EMA connects Wabco's braking and stability control systems with ZF's active steering solution for the first time and marks an important step toward realizing the transportation industry's vision of autonomous driving."
European Union regulations now require newly registered trucks to be fitted with Electronic Stability Control, Advanced Emergency Braking Systems and Lane Departure Warning systems (LDW). ZF believes that the more closely systems and functions are networked and automated, and as more passenger car technologies transfer to the commercial vehicle sector, the greater the potential for safety improvements that will quickly and effectively protect drivers and other road users.
Steps Closer to Autonomous Driving
ZF says the megatrends of automation, networking, safety and the electrification of formerly mechanical control components are changing the world of mobility.
Instead of developing stand-alone solutions, ZF is integrating intelligent systems.
The demonstration day at Aachen included ride and drive demonstrations for the global trucking trade press of various technologies that will bring heavy trucks closer to being fully autonomous in certain situations.
ZF demonstrated a truck that can back itself into an alley dock with the combined use of GPS for positioning and a camera and target arrangement that provides guidance for the truck's controllers. The driver passively assists the maneuver by walking alongside the vehicle, holding a button down on a tablet that keeps the truck in motion. The truck and camera system have sensors that can detect pedestrians or cars coming into the truck's path.
Another feature demonstrated was a fully self-steering truck equipped with a hybrid electric powertrain. It operates on electric motors at low speed, up to 30 km/h, before switching to diesel. It also has a version of adaptive cruise control that maintains a safe following distance at all times, even at low speeds.
The features (on their own) and others are individual systems that are combined into what ZF calls Innovation Truck 2016, which will appear at this year’s IAA Commercial Vehicles show in Hannover, Germany, in September.