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Honda own system was launched in Japan in 2004
Japan's Legend features (FIR) Night Vision

Honda Legend: Intelligent Night Vision system with far infreared technology available in Japan since autumn 2004

Honda Legend with far infrared night vision technology has been known in Japan for nearly a year now.

August 2005.

On August 24, 2004, Honda Motor Co., Ltd. announced that it had developed the world’s first Intelligent Night Vision System, which uses “far infrared” cameras to detect pedestrians in or approaching the vehicle’s path and provides the driver visual and audio cautions to help prevent accidents involving pedestrians.

The new system was made available on the Honda Legend when it was launched in Japan in fall 2004 (no confirmation yet if or when this sytem could be made available outside Japan).

The Intelligent Night Vision System uses images obtained from two far infrared cameras positioned in the lower section of the front bumper to detect the position and movement of infrared heat-emitting objects and determine whether they are in or approaching the vehicle’s path.

Based on size and shape, the system also determines if the detected object is a pedestrian. In addition to the conventional night vision function of giving the driver an enhanced view of the road ahead, the system is the world’s first to provide cautions that inform the driver of the presence of pedestrians that are on the road or about to cross the vehicle’s path.

Honda's Intelligent Night Vision System adopts the following configuration:

·          Far infrared camera (2)- The camera obtains a visual image based on the “far infrared” radiation emitted by humans and other objects. Because it uses far infrared radiation, it is capable of obtaining a viable image without the use of a light source, as is required by visible-light or “near infrared” cameras.

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·          Heads-up display - The image is reflected in a mirror positioned on top of the dashboard, which retracts into the dashboard for daytime stowage.

·          Pedestrian detecting ECU - The ECU determines pedestrian position and motion based on the image from the cameras, along with vehicle speed and other vehicle information. The system detects pedestrians in or approaching the vehicle’s path, and provides caution to the driver via a visual enhancement frame around the pedestrian image and an audio caution.

·          Sensors - Headlight on/off information, windscreen wiper setting, yaw rate, vehicle speed, ambient temperature.

This technology contributed in awarding Honda's 4th generation Legend the title of Japan Car of the Year Award 2004-2005 and Most Advanced Technology Award, from the Japan Car of the Year Executive, with the world’s first Super Handling All-Wheel Drive system (SH-AWD). This was the ninth Japan COTY win for Honda. In recent years Honda has taken the top honours for the Civic in 2000,  Fit (Jazz) in 2001 and Accord in 2002.

In its ongoing efforts to reach a better understanding of the kinematics of pedestrian accidents and to develop technologies to protect pedestrians, Honda developed the world’s first pedestrian dummy, POLAR I, in 1988. This was followed by POLAR II in 2000, which features an even more human-like structure and more points of measurement. The company is also at the forefront of vehicle pedestrian protection technology, generally acknowledged as being the first company to manufacture cars specifically designed to minimise pedestrian injuries. More recently the company has developed the world’s first pop-up bonnet with the same aim.  

Pedestrian fatalities make up approximately 30% of all traffic accident fatalities in Japan (Source: ITARDA, Institute for Traffic Accident Research and Data Analysis, traffic statistics, 2003).

Given that 70% of all pedestrian fatalities are said to occur at night, the independently developed Intelligent Night Vision System addresses a vital problem. Honda is committed to the further development of technologies designed to help prevent accidents involving pedestrians.

Honda UK cites other figures from Britain’s Department of Transport, where twice the number of pedestrian fatalities occur during the winter darkness months of November, December and January, compared to May, June and July summer period. Pedestrian fatalities make up more than one fifth of all traffic accident fatalities in Britain.

Related Topics:
Two main categories of night view systems, each with its own fortes

Night Vision: Cadillac to Lexus, Honda, BMW & Mercedes-Benz

Honda Legend (Japan) Intelligent Night Vision System

Siemens combines head-up display with Night Vision

BMW's FIR Night Vision system for the 7-Series

Night Vision in the new Mercedes-Benz S-Class

Automotive Lighting equips the new S-Class

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