Thatcham Research demonstrates truck AEBS in action 01 July 2015

Fleet operators, policy makers and truck and automotive journalists were treated to real world demonstrations of modern truck and car active safety technology system at Heyford Park yesterday (30 June 2015), by Thatcham Research.

Pictured in the video is a Dennis Eagle RCV (refuse collection vehicle) Elite 6 chassis fitted with AEBS (autonomous emergency braking system) approaching a dummy car being dragged by a Land Rover Discovery.

Other vehicles demonstrating the same manoeuvre included a fully laden Volvo FH combination and a DAF LF dropside. In the vast majority of cases, each truck's AEBS successfully brought the truck to a controlled emergency stop without the driver applying the brakes.

Sensors involved include radar, camera and LIDAR (laser-based light detection and ranging), with information fused and processed by onboard computers.

Each vehicle manufacturer's system is programmed to warn the driver of an impending collision, and then, if he or she takes no evasive action, to dip the brakes once before applying full emergency braking.

In the vast majority of demonstrations, the truck stopped shortly before colliding with the towed mock car. In a few instances, there was an impact but at vastly reduced speed.


New EU regulations come into force on 1 November 2015 driving the fitment of AEB systems on virtually all new trucks, buses and coaches over 8 tonnes.

Although the mandatory performance requirements are not to the level required for Euro NCAP five star rating in the automotive world, most truck manufacturers have already risen to the challenge and are offering AEBS that goes way beyond the regulations, matching Euro NCAP.

Vehicles not being equipped with AEBS are vans – with the exception of some Ford and Mercedes-Benz vehicles.

Next up for advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) will be automatic pedestrian and cyclist detection systems, designed to follow up to 50 moving 'targets' ahead in real time, and to automatically stop vehicles if they detect an imminent impact.

In 2017, Volvo is committed to putting 100 cars on the streets of Gothenburg, Sweden, under its DriveMe self driving vehicles project and running with 360 degree crash protection systems.

Volvo describes its upcoming system as involving multiple radar sensor, cameras, and laser and ultrasonic sensors together providing a 360 real-time view of the vehicle's surroundings. The system is also connected to high-performance GPS and cloud based 3D digital map systems that are continuously updated with traffic data.

The message: ADAS are not as far away as many think. Systems will be trialled in cars in 2017 and commercially available on 2018—19 vehicles.

Brian Tinham

Related Companies
DAF Trucks Ltd
Dennis Eagle Ltd
Thatcham Motor Insurance Repair Research Centre
Volvo Group UK Ltd

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