Interior rearview mirror system

  • US 7,815,326 B2
  • Filed: 04/23/2010
  • Issued: 10/19/2010
  • Est. Priority Date: 06/06/2002
  • Status: Active Grant
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First Claim
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1. An interior rearview mirror system for a vehicle, said interior rearview mirror system comprising:

  • an interior rearview mirror assembly;

    a mirror casing and a reflective element, said reflective element comprising a transflective reflective element having a transflective reflector that is partially transmitting of light therethrough and partially reflecting of light incident thereon;

    wherein said reflective element is at least 15 percent transmissive of visible light incident at a rear of said reflective element;

    an information display disposed behind said reflective element whereby information displayed by said information display is viewable through said transflective reflector by a driver of a vehicle when said interior rearview mirror assembly is normally mounted in the vehicle and when said information display is displaying information, and wherein said information display is substantially non-viewable through said transflective reflector by the driver of the vehicle when said information display is not displaying information;

    wherein said reflective element provides a field of view rearward of the vehicle to a driver of the vehicle when said interior rearview mirror assembly is normally mounted in the vehicle, and wherein a mounting structure mounts said mirror casing to an interior portion of the vehicle, and wherein said mirror casing is adjustable relative to the interior portion of the vehicle via at least one pivot element of said mounting structure to adjust the rearward field of view of said reflective element when said interior rearview mirror assembly is normally mounted in the vehicle;

    wherein said interior rearview mirror assembly comprises a compass sensor having magnetoresponsive sensing elements;

    wherein said transflective reflective element comprises an electrochromic reflective element having an electrochromic medium sandwiched between two substrates;

    wherein said interior rearview mirror assembly comprises a control;

    wherein at least a portion of said control is disposed within said mirror casing and behind said reflective element;

    wherein another portion of said control is disposed at said mounting structure, and wherein said another portion of said control comprises a forward facing CMOS imaging array with a field of view through the windshield of the vehicle, and wherein said forward facing CMOS imaging array is part of at least one of (a) a headlamp controller of the vehicle, (b) an object detection system of the vehicle, (c) a rain sensor of the vehicle and (d) a lane departure warning system of the vehicle;

    wherein (i) said control is responsive to a sensing of a magnetic field by said sensing elements and (ii) said control comprises a photosensor;

    wherein said control determines a directional heading of the vehicle responsive to said sensing by said sensing elements, said control automatically compensating for a deviating magnetic field;

    wherein said control controls dimming of said electrochromic medium responsive at least in part to detection of light by said photosensor;

    wherein said information display displays the directional heading of the vehicle;

    wherein electrical wiring connects to circuitry of at least the portion of said control that is disposed within said mirror casing and wherein said electrical wiring passes through said at least one pivot element of said mounting structure;

    wherein said control comprises at least one of (i) an A/D converter, (ii) a D/A converter, (iii) memory, (iv) signal processing circuitry, (v) filtering circuitry and (vi) a display driver; and

    wherein said control comprises a bus interface for a network bus of the vehicle.

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