Meritor WABCO says its next-generation Lane Departure Warning (LDW) system, powered by SafeTrak technology from Takata, will be available for fleet installation next month.
As well, the company has introduced the next generation of the OnGuard collision safety system, said to feature advancements in its radar-based technology. Integrating collision warning, adaptive cruise with active braking, and collision mitigation, it will be available on every vehicle ordered with OnGuard after Oct. 1.
The LDW is a forward-looking, vision-based system designed to monitor the road and the truck’s position in the lane, audibly warning the driver if he unintentionally veers out of his lane. Drivers are alerted if the system detects lane drifts, weaving, or lane changes without a turn signal. Advanced image analysis algorithms enable the Meritor WABCO LDW to detect a wide variety of lane markings, the company says, such as dividing lines on the highway, even in unfavorable lighting or weather conditions where there are limited visible solid, dashed or reflective lane markings. It’s a fully integrated compact unit with automatic calibration and integrated diagnostics that simplify setup and operation.
An exclusive feature is a Driver Alertness Warning function that provides a warning when the system determines that the driver is drowsy. This helps drivers stay aware of dangerous driving situations caused by fatigue.
The U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has estimated the payback for LDW type systems to be as short as nine months and the payback as high as $6.55 for every dollar spent, the company notes. And the National Transportation Safety Board has recommended the adoption of LDW.
You probably don’t know Takata, by the way, but it’s no small outfit. Based in Japan, its customers include nearly every automotive manufacturer and it specializes in safety systems. It operates 53 manufacturing locations in 20 countries, and employs over 36,000 people globally, with more than 20,000 in North America.
The new Meritor WABCO OnGuard system is said to feature improved object-tracking performance and will integrate stationary-object braking capability in the near future.
Major improvements include advanced radar resolution and robust tracking designed to minimize false warnings from very small, inanimate objects. The evasive maneuver check gives the system visibility into adjacent lanes. If the system recognizes the potential for a rear-end collision and detects an object in an adjacent lane, it’s designed to detect that the vehicle cannot perform an evasive maneuver and apply the brakes sooner. The earlier the system brakes, the higher the likelihood of avoiding a crash.
Auto alignment makes the radar more resistant to misalignment, designed to eliminate the need to perform small, manual adjustments during installation and over time due to normal operating conditions.
There’s also an improved driver display with a larger, higher-resolution screen shaped for easier orientation on the vehicle dashboard.
As well, when faced with a serious accident threat, the next generation OnGuard system is designed to brake the vehicle more aggressively than the current system’s limit of one-third to one-half of a full brake application.