Eaton Gets DOT Grant For Collision Warning Systems

Posted on December 16, 2005

Eaton Corp. has been awarded a $6.7 million contract by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) as part of a $31.6 million program to develop technologies to help drivers avoid crashes. The Integrated Vehicle-Based Safety Systems (IVBSS) Program Field Operational Test is a four-year program that will for the first time bring together five automotive and commercial vehicle suppliers, including Eaton Corp., to develop and test a new integrated crash warning system for passenger cars and commercial heavy-duty trucks.

The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI) is the primary contractor coordinating the work of the partnership and conducting the field experiments. The program will develop integrated advanced technologies that will warn drivers when they are about to leave the road, are in danger of colliding with another vehicle while attempting a lane change, or are at risk of colliding with the vehicle in front of them.

Eaton will use its $6.7 million contract to develop the integrated system for the commercial vehicle portion of the IVBSS program. Created by Eaton’s Innovation Center in Milwaukee, Wis., the first step to developing the integrated system will be to combine lane-departure warning technology, which uses camera-based vision and image processing, with Eaton’s radar-based VORAD technology. The integrated system is expected to prevent conflicting warnings and reduce false alarms and unintended consequences, such as causing a road departure crash while trying to prevent a rear-end crash.