Driver Status

To understand what the driver  exactly needs is crucial to offer a real Holistic Human-Machine Interface experience. Therefore our Interior Camera gathers the current condition of drivers. It can be used for Driver Monitoring or Gesture Recognition. 

Driver Monitoring enables gaze target recognition, face recognition or drowsiness classification. Gesture Recognition provides for  a natural interaction and joy of use. Standard swipe gestures or custom specific gestures can be implemented. 

Interior Camera – Driver Monitoring

Benefits & Features

  • Head pose => auto adjustment of head-up display, mirrors, etc.
  • Gaze target recognition (e.g. mirror) => traffic attentiveness
  • Drowsiness classification => awareness ability
  • Face recognition => personalization
  • Planned features: gaze interaction, heart rate measurement

Technical Information

  • Operates in complete darkness by using infrared illumination (wavelength 850 or 940 nm)
  • Automatic extrinsic calibration
  • Driver Monitoring: Scalable from mono to multi-camera system

Gesture Recognition

To understand what the driver  exactly needs is crucial to offer a real Holistic Human-Machine Interface experience. Therefore our Interior Camera gathers the current condition of drivers. It can be used for Driver Monitoring or Gesture Recognition. 

Driver Monitoring enables gaze target recognition, face recognition or drowsiness classification. Gesture Recognition provides for  a natural interaction and joy of use. Standard swipe gestures or custom specific gestures can be implemented. 

Benefits & Features

  • Head pose => auto adjustment of head-up display, mirrors, etc.
  • Gaze target recognition (e.g. mirror) => traffic attentiveness
  • Drowsiness classification => awareness ability
  • Face recognition => personalization
  • Planned features: gaze interaction, heart rate measurement

Technical Information

  • Operates in complete darkness by using infrared illumination (wavelength 850 or 940 nm)
  • Automatic extrinsic calibration
  • Driver Monitoring: Scalable from mono to multi-camera system

Gesture Control

Intuitive operation reduces driver distraction and increases safety

Continental further developed gesture-based control in the car. Now the detection zone of gestures is focuses on the steering wheel. This is possible due to a time-of-flight sensor, which is integrated into the instrument cluster. It detects the motion of the hand and converts it into actions. The driver can navigate through the menus by swiping up and down, and confirm the selection with a brief tapping motion. Touch-free operation is also possible for other functions. For example, if the driver moves his fingers up and down in a uniform movement while keeping his hands on the steering wheel, he can accept calls or reject them. The time-of-flight sensor comprises a 3D camera system with an integrated 3D image sensor and converts the infrared signal detected by the sensor into a 3D image. Consequently, the hand positions and gestures of the driver are detected with millimeter precision and converted to actions. The system can currently detect four different gestures: setting the navigation, browsing through apps and starting music, answering calls, and controlling the on-board computer. Initial reactions of test users confirm the selection of these gestures.

Using this approach, the solution minimizes driver distraction. Previous gesture-based control systems meant that drivers had to take their hands off the steering wheel or take their eyes off the road. Now there is a clearly defined area in which gestures are recognized on the steering wheel, which minimizes distraction and increases safety. This narrowing down also prevents the driver from unintentionally starting gesture-based control by means of their usual everyday gestures, and thus making unwanted selections.

Gesture-based control is one part of the development of a holistic human-machine interface. It is crucial for strengthening the driver’s confidence in their vehicle, yet another important step on the road to automated driving.

Reduced complexity for diverse applications and optimized system costs

The new operating concept can replace other elements such as buttons or even touch-sensitive surfaces on the steering wheel. It uses two transparent plastic panels – without any electronic components – behind the steering wheel, which a driver can operate with his thumbs, almost like a touchpad. The driver will benefit from intuitive operation, while vehicle manufacturers benefit from optimized system costs. The clear design of the panels is compatible with almost any control geometry and new gestures can be added at any time. In addition, the system can be integrated in many different vehicle classes and not just in the luxury segments.