Summary Peter Hendrickx

Peter Hendrickx (Groeneveld) gave a presentation on RoadEye, the 2nd generation radar sensor for Adaptive Cruise Control. Groeneveld develops and produces products and systems in the fields of Automated Maintenance, Active Safety and ICT. In the field of Active Safety, Groeneveld is currently developing a series of advanced radar systems for trucks and passenger cars under the product name RoadEye.

Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) is similar to conventional cruise control in that it maintains the vehicle’s pre-set speed. However, unlike conventional cruise control, this system can automatically adjust speed in order to maintain a proper distance between vehicles in the same lane. The current ACC systems have some limitations, among which problems with tracking vehicles in curves. What’s next after ACC? The answer of Groeneveld: RoadEye!

Together with other partners (UMS, ERA, EADS, TNO), Groeneveld developed this 2nd generation radar for ACC. The new sensor consists of 7 receiver antennae. A major improvement is the higher resolution and increased sight angle. They allow the system to monitor a major part of the road ahead of the vehicle closely. For example, this enables early detection from objects in an adjacent lane. Furthermore, with the RoadEye sensor it is possible to offer both ACC and Stop and Go in very densed traffic conditions without additional short range sensors. RoadEye can act as an active safety feature instead of only a comfort gimmick.

The RoadEye sensor was tested in the TNO VEHIL laboratory by installing it on a MAN truck.

Besides ACC, the sensor can be used in the following applications:

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Collision Avoidance Support (driver being alerted to prevent a collision)

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Automatic Collision Mitigation (automatic emergency braking when collision can not be avoided)

Furthermore, Groeneveld introduces another application with the RoadEye sensor: Safe Headway Control. This after market system could enhance the market acceptance. The system consists of an in-vehicle display with warning LEDs and acoustic signals to indicate a safe distance. Apart from the distance warning, there is a possibility to control engine brake and cruise control function.

Recently, a demo test truck with the RoadEye radar sensor was developed in close cooperation with MAN Trucks and TNO Automotive.

After the presentation several questions were posed. One question concerned the maximum deceleration with the RoadEye system. Generally, the system can decelerate with 30% of the maximum braking performance of a truck. An application such as Automatic Collision Mitigation should be able to decelerate with 80% of the maximum braking performance. Another question concerned the operation of ACC and Stop and Go. When you are driving faster than 30 km/h, the ACC system can be switched on. When you enter a traffic jam, the Stop and Go function will take over from the ACC. The system can come to a standstill after which it can automatically accelerate when the preceding vehicle speeds up again. The third question was about the difference between radar and lidar sensors. Lidar sensors use light detection for defining targets. These sensors are cheaper than radar sensors. Their performance is sensitive to weather conditions (e.g. rain), contrary to the performance of radar sensors. The final question was: What about the 3rd generation radar sensors? The 2nd generation sensors performs well, but we have to work towards a scalable product with a better performance (e.g. including pedestrian detection) and which is less expensive.

Click here for the slides of the presentation.