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ADAS System in Cars: Meaning, Importance, Fucntions and Benefits
Considering the fast-paced lifestyle and increased occurrence of these accidents, the automobile sector is coming up with advanced safety features. One such safety feature is the ADAS System in a car, the abbreviation for Advanced Driver Assistance System.
Dive in to know how this system works, its features, benefits, and more.
What is Advanced Driving Assisstance System (ADAS)?
ADAS is a technological feature in cars that ensures driver safety. These cutting-edge features are there to ensure a safe and convenient driving experience. It uses multiple advanced devices, such as sensors, cameras, etc., to detect hazards and help drivers avoid accidents or collisions.
ADAS significantly improves vehicle safety and is available in most modern vehicles. This system includes advanced features like blind spot detection, lane departure, and automatic emergency braking.
What is the Purpose of ADAS?
ADAS systems are passive and active systems designed to omit human errors while driving and operating any vehicle. It utilises more than one device to improve the driving experience while also making it a safer one.
There are multiple levels of ADAS, encompassing cameras, sensors, blind spot detection, adaptive cruise control, self-parking and more. Looking at the rapid development of ADAS, the ultimate extension of the system would be "autonomous cars" or truly self-driving modes.
Major automobile manufacturers, such as Volkswagen, Tesla, Volvo, Toyota, Ford, BMW, etc., are investing extensively to develop ADAS in all types of vehicles. You can find ADAS in cars, trucks, military and farming vehicles, etc.
How does ADAS System Work?
ADAS informs the driver to take necessary actions to avoid an accident or alert him of any danger. ADAS systems can sense the environment surrounding the car and quickly pass on the information to the system. It then provides the correct output to the driver. The whole process is fast and accurate.
ADAS-equipped vehicles have an array of advanced sensors that can detect danger which humans may sometimes miss and make real-time decisions. Some examples of these radars can be RADAR to see in the dark, SONAR for echolocation, cameras and LiDAR sensors for checking all directions at once, satellites for detecting the exact latitude and longitude of your car, etc.
Such sensors in ADAS constantly check your vehicle's surroundings and pass on this information to you so that you can take necessary actions to omit the chances of accidents and mishaps.
What are the Different ADAS Components?
Several components make up an ADAS system. Check out some of the primary ones:
ECU, or Electronic Control Unit, is the brain of an ADAS system. ECU processes all the information gathered from sensors. It then processes the response, such as applying a brake or accelerator.
Sensors can be radar, camera, lidar, and other components that detect the objects in the surroundings and provide information to the ECUs.
Actuators are the ones that carry out the instruction given by the ECUs, such as steering or applying brakes.
HMI or Human Machine Interface interfaces between the driver and the ADAS system. The primary function of this component is to provide feedback to the driver about any potential danger or the system’s operation.
A lot of modern ADAS systems are connected via internet connectivity. This allows over-the-air updates, remote diagnostics and monitoring of the system.
ADAS systems often store data available through sensors such as cameras and radars. This helps in improving their performance. Also, it helps in future analysis and development of the system.
What are the Benefits of the Advanced Driver Assistance Systems?
Here are some of the benefits of an ADAS:
The adaptive features in ADAS, such as automated lighting, adaptive cruise control, and PCAM, help drivers by giving them navigational alerts (lane departure, blind spot detection, traffic jam, etc.).
Improvement in safety designs in an ADAS helps to promote safe driving. The system is designed to avoid road collisions by notifying the driver about potential hazards.
ADAS also helps in enhanced fuel economy. As ADAS changes the driving style of a vehicle, such as automatically turning off a vehicle in traffic – it helps save up to 15% of fuel.
ADAS also helps minimise the maintenance cost of a vehicle as it lowers the chances of accidents and potential hazards of a vehicle.
What are the Applications of ADAS?
Here are the most common ADAS applications:
1. Adaptive Light Control
As the name suggests, the adaptive light control adjusts the vehicle’s headlights as per external light conditions. It adjusts the strength, rotation, and direction according to the vehicle’s surroundings and darkness.
2. Adaptive Cruise Control
Adaptive cruise control feature is especially beneficial on highways where drivers may find it difficult to keep the speed of their cars and others in check for a prolonged period. Using ADAS, this feature can accelerate, slow down, or at times even stop the car depending on the other object's action in that area.
3. Glare-Free High Beam & Pixel Light
This latest feature of ADAS adjusts the strength and direction of the car's headlights. This prevents other drivers from being momentarily blinded by the upcoming vehicle's light and is especially useful during dark driving conditions.
4. Autonomous Valet Parking
It is a relatively new feature in ADAS, and its works in conjunction with vehicle sensors, cloud services, and network communications in parking areas. The primary functions of this feature include informing the vehicle about its current location, where it must go, and how to reach safely.
ADAS utilises all this information to perform driving acceleration, steering, and braking until the vehicle is parked safely.
5. Automatic Parking/ Self-Parking
The automatic parking feature keeps the driver one step ahead by informing them about nearby areas so they know when to turn the steering wheel and stop to park. Cars with rear-view mirrors help drivers better navigate such surroundings than conventional side mirrors.
Some self-parking systems can park the car by taking together the inputs of multiple sensors without needing any driver intervention.
6. Night Vision
The night vision feature lets the driver see things at night time which would otherwise be invisible to human eyes. There are two types of night vision– active and passive night vision systems.
Active night vision projects infrared rays, while passive night vision utilises the thermal energy from animals, cars, and other objects in the surroundings.
7. Navigation System
Car navigation systems offer a combination of voice prompts and on-screen instructions to help drivers follow through a route. Some navigation systems even provide exact traffic data and re-route the map accordingly to avoid traffic jams.
8. Crosswind Stabilisation
This is a relatively newer feature in the ADAS system. It helps the vehicle counteract strong crosswinds. This system detects strong pressure acting on the vehicle and applies brakes accordingly.
9. Unseen Area Monitoring
An unseen area monitoring system utilises sensors to detect objects in the driver's blind spot. You can think of an instance where the car is stuck in an occupied lane. The system detects and provides the driver with information they cannot obtain otherwise.
10. Automatic Emergency Braking
Automatic emergency braking is one of the most useful improvements in ADAS. This system detects when the driver is about to hit an object or another vehicle on its path. The system can detect the distance between nearby objects or traffic and detect any danger.
Some automatic emergency braking can even take safety measures like reducing speed, tightening of seat belts, and engaging the adaptive steering system to avoid a collision.
11. Driver Drowsiness Detection
This application warns the driver of drowsiness. The application uses sensors to detect the driver's heart rate to detect if they are feeling drowsy. There are many other ways to determine if the driver is feeling distracted. The system can also alert the driver about lane detection.
12. 5G and V2X
This is the newest feature of ADAS and provides communication between your vehicle and others and pedestrians with low latency or higher reliability, usually known as V2X. The primary function of this application is to improve existing methods and cellular networks to enhance situational awareness, suggest or control speed limits for traffic, and provide real-time updates to GPS.
13. Driver Monitoring System
This is just another application to detect and measure the driver's attention. The camera sensors can detect whether the driver's focus is on the road or somewhere else. The application can then alert them via noise, vibration in the steering wheel, or flashing lights.
In some rare cases, the system can even take measures to stop the vehicle immediately.
What is the Future of ADAS?
Along with people's rapidly changing lifestyles, the need for technological advancement in software and hardware is more than ever. Hence, there will be more improvements in the ADAS system in future, and it will also be made available for almost all vehicle models.
Enhanced reliability, shorter development cycle, and improved road safety are reasons why ADAS has a bright future. Also, ADAS electronic controller units (ECU) are developing to be more integrated domain controllers with centralised ECUs. This means the current ADAS technology is at the Partial Driving Automation level.
In this stage, a car can accelerate, decelerate, and control steering but lacks the part where it can perform self-driving. However, with continual improvements, ADAS is not far from developing into a fully automated mode.
With each passing day, the importance of ADAS systems in cars is increasing. It is also one of the most useful inventions of technology as it focuses on human safety, which will require further attention in the upcoming days.