Auto Electronics

Sensata offers sensors for driver awareness, occupant detection

Sensata Technologies has introduced a vision sensor, a camera module and a library of software subroutines for driver awareness, and a piezo-electric sensor and a monocrystalline silicon strain gauge (MSG) for occupant detection.

The firm’s driver awareness products include the IM103, an automotive-grade CMOS image sensor with 120 dB dynamic range. The device is based on Autobrite technology developed by SMaL, which Sensata recently acquired from Cypress Semiconductor.

Market segment manager Jessica Frackelton said the technology is especially useful “in the dramatically changing lighting conditions of daylight and night driving. “For example, the system can readily distinguish the outline of a passing vehicle even at night when headlights might wash out the image on conventional imagers.”

Applications for the CMOS image sensor include lane departure warning systems, adaptive cruise control, intelligent park assist, blind-spot detection, traffic sign recognition, and adaptive forward lighting systems.

Sensata’s ACM100 automotive camera module includes a lens and imager assembly package with electronics for onboard processing. The company's Vision Platform combines a camera with a digital signal processor. A vision system support library (VSSL) includes subroutines for use in developing algorithms for vision-based applications.

Unlike weight-only detection systems, which cannot always differentiate between a person and a heavy object, Sensata’s piezo-electric device senses the frequency response of a human and can determine his or her relative position.

Market segment manager Michael Mainvielle said the device consists of a piezo-electric wire incorporated into a pad that provides input to an electronic module. The pad can be mounted easily under a seat cushion, and the device can be integrated into a variety of seat structures, including A- or B-surface mounting. It accommodates all seat covering options, including ventilated seats. A three-position sensor is available for rear seats.

The monocrystalline silicon strain gauge (MSG) occupant weight sensor consists of a silicon MEMS strain gauge element glass bonded to a stainless steel diaphragm. Four MSG sensors mounted within the seat structure create accurate weight measures for safe airbag deployment and compliance with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 208 (FMVSS208). Design options include an axial or flange rigid sensor, a rigid sensor with a stress reduction component (SRC), or an SRC at flange center style.

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