Jaguar Land Rover has announced that it would develop a technology which would offer drivers a 360 degree view out of their vehicle, uninterrupted by the pillars that support the roof. Being named as ‘360 Virtual Urban Windscreen’, it would aid navigation on busy urban roads and a ghost car could be projected in front of the car for the driver to follow.
A screen would be embedded in the surface of each pillar in the car and would take a live video feed from cameras covering the angles outside the car usually obscured in the blind spots created by the A, B and C-pillars. Pedestrians, cyclists and other vehicles would be visible all around the car – and by combining the transparent pillars with an advanced high quality Heads-Up display, the movement of other road users could be highlighted to the driver with an on-screen halo moving across the car’s virtual windscreen. When the driver indicates to change direction, when they move their head to look over their shoulder during an overtake maneuvre, or as the vehicle approaches a junction, the system would automatically make the left or right-hand side pillars transparent.
Dr Wolfgang Epple, Director of Research and Technology, Jaguar Land Rover, said: “Our ultimate aim is to reduce road accidents and enhance the urban driving experience. The Jaguar Land Rover research team is developing this technology to improve visibility and to give the driver with the right information at the right time. If we can keep the driver’s eyes on the road ahead and present information in a non-distracting way, we can help drivers make better decisions in the most demanding and congested driving environments.” Both the ‘360 Virtual Urban Windscreen’ and ‘Follow-Me Ghost Car Navigation’ are part of a suite of new concept technologies that Jaguar Land Rover is developing to reduce the potential for accidents.
The full potential for the 360 Virtual Urban Windscreen would be delivered by connecting the virtual windscreen to the Cloud. By connecting the car to roadside infrastructure and businesses in the urban landscape, the Virtual Urban Windscreen could present information ranging from petrol station prices to the number of parking spaces available, so drivers won’t have to look for this information themselves. The connected car could also enhance navigation by advising the driver to turn left or right at more visible landmarks, such as pubs or shops, rather than just road signs or street names. While the most intuitive and efficient way to navigate to a specific location is to be able to follow someone who knows the best route - so the Jaguar Land Rover team is developing ‘Follow-MeGhost Car Navigation’,which projects an image of a vehicle in front of the driver’s car for them to follow, turn by turn, to their destination.