Land Rover’s researchers have revealed they are developing transparent trailer technology.
The technology, designed to eliminate the blind spot when towing a large item like a caravan, horse box or trailer, will allow the driver to clearly see vehicles coming up behind them, make manoeuvrability easier and improve safety when overtaking.
The prototype technology, demonstrated by a Range Rover in the film above, combines the video feeds from the existing reversing camera on the vehicle and the cameras on the wing mirrors with an additional wireless digital camera on the rear of the trailer, purposely placed to implement the technology. This combined video feed is then automatically sent to the rear view mirror in the vehicle making the trailer appear see-through.
Dr Wolfgang Epple, Director of Research and Technology at Jaguar Land Rover said, “Our transparent trailer project is researching how we could offer a view out of the vehicle unrestricted by your trailer, no matter what its size or shape. Our prototype system offers a very high quality video image with no distortion of other cars or obstructions. This means the driver would have exactly the right information to make safe and effective decisions when driving or manoeuvring, making towing safer and less stressful.”
Also being demonstrated at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials is Cargo Sense, a technology which alerts the driver, either while on the move or remotely through a bespoke phone app, on the status of their cargo. This innovative trailer monitoring system combines an in-trailer video feed and pressure sensors on the floor to produce alerts if the cargo becomes unstable or the trailer is tampered with.
While on the move the system will send a ‘check cargo’ warning to the dashboard to alert the driver of any potential problems with the cargo, or horse, before they become serious. When away from their vehicle, users can also check the status of the trailer remotely via the Cargo Sense app. Features include alerts if a horse becomes distressed, if there are any noticeable temperature changes or if the trailer is tampered with.
Speaking about Cargo Sense, Dr Epple said, “Many of our customers carry valuable cargoes for business and pleasure, so we are researching a range of technologies that would enhance the towing experience and make it safer.”
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“Many of our customers carry valuable cargoes for business and pleasure, so we are researching a range of technologies that would enhance the towing experience and make it safer.”
Dr Wolfgang Epple
Director of Research and Technology at Jaguar Land Rover