Forward facing sensing system for vehicle

  • US 9,507,021 B2
  • Filed: 05/09/2016
  • Issued: 11/29/2016
  • Est. Priority Date: 01/25/2007
  • Status: Active Grant
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First Claim
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1. A forward facing sensing system for a vehicle, the vehicle having a windshield, said forward facing sensing system comprising:

  • a radar sensor device disposed within an interior cabin of a vehicle equipped with said forward facing sensing system, and wherein said radar sensor device has a sensing direction forward of the equipped vehicle;

    wherein said radar sensor device transmits at a frequency of at least 20 GHz;

    an image sensor disposed within the interior cabin of the equipped vehicle behind the vehicle windshield and wherein said image sensor views forward of the equipped vehicle through the vehicle windshield;

    wherein said image sensor comprises a pixelated imaging array sensor comprising a plurality of photo-sensing pixels;

    a control comprising an image processor, said image processor operable to analyze image data captured by said image sensor in order to, at least in part, detect a pedestrian present exterior of the equipped vehicle in its direction of forward travel;

    wherein said image processor comprises an image processing chip that processes image data captured by said image sensor utilizing object detection software;

    wherein said control, responsive at least in part to processing of captured image data by said image processor and to sensing by said radar sensor, determines that a potentially hazardous condition may exist in the path of forward travel of the equipped vehicle, and wherein said potentially hazardous condition comprises a pedestrian in the path of forward travel of the equipped vehicle;

    wherein said radar sensor device and said image sensor collaborate in a way that enhances determination of existence of the potentially hazardous condition in the path of forward travel of the equipped vehicle;

    wherein said radar sensor device and said image sensor collaborate in a way that enhances sensing capability of said sensing system for the pedestrian in the path of forward travel of the equipped vehicle;

    wherein said radar sensor device and said image sensor share, at least in part, common circuitry;

    wherein said radar sensor device and said image sensor are housed in a self-contained unit disposed behind and attached at the vehicle windshield of the equipped vehicle, and wherein said self-contained unit mounts at the vehicle windshield of the equipped vehicle and is removable therefrom as a unit for at least one of service and replacement; and

    wherein said control at least in part controls an adaptive cruise control system of the equipped vehicle.

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