Letting you see the unseen

While all-electric power and autonomous driving systems grab most of the headlines these days, there’s another piece of tech out there that’s worthy of your consideration – augmented reality (AR). It’s the same stuff used in the video game sensation Pokemon Go, but rather than imprisoning adorable monsters, some folks are interested in using it for four-wheeled applications. The latest automotive AR news comes from Honda, which just filed two patents that outline how the technology can be used to enhance safety behind the wheel. While Honda has yet to release an official statement on the technology, the patents summarize systems that allow drivers to avoid pedestrians and rear-end collisions.

Essentially, the patents propose a system that pulls images and information from various onboard sensors, then relays that info to the driver through a heads-up display that projects it onto the windshield, revealing what would normally be obstructed or out of sight.

One of the patents shows a system that detects pedestrians, then shows the driver an AR display of an intersection dotted by pedestrians, including those in the driver’s blind spot.

A second patent incorporates vehicle-to-vehicle communication whereby the distance between two cars is projected into the driver’s field of vision. Should a car ahead of the group brake heavily or identify an obstruction, it will relay that information to the cars behind it, with the drivers notified by an AR display.

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The Full Story

It all sounds pretty cool, right?

Believe it or not, this isn’t the first time we’ve encountered proposals to use AR technology for road safety. Jaguar Land Rover is another player here, but others have incorporated the technology for everything from racing, to car maintenance, to navigation.

Looking for more information on the automotive applications of augmented reality? Check out our in-depth tech piece here.

Source: Honda Patent - uspto.gov

Photo credit: Honda Patent Application No. US20160260326

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