Case study: The latest innovation in ADAS testing

Perform complex, high-speed tests safely with the Guided Soft Target vehicle

Oxford Technical Solutions (OxTS) has recently provided a GPS-aided inertial navigation system for integration in a new revolutionary piece of technology. Dynamic Research, Inc. (DRI) has collaborated with Anthony Best Dynamics (ABD) to develop an Integrated ABD/DRI Guided Soft Target (GST) vehicle, with DRI being responsible for the design and development of the chassis, and ABD integrating their software and driverless control system technology. As part of the control system, an OxTS GPS/INS is used to provide high-precision position measurements for accurate path-following control.

The GST is designed for use in advanced driver assistance Systems (ADAS) testing. In particular, the GST is well suited for the testing and evaluation of Advanced Crash Avoidance Technologies (ACATs) such as vehicle collision detection and crash mitigation systems.

Ideal for ADAS Testing

ADAS are becoming more and more popular in new vehicles. Some, such as autonomous emergency braking (AEB), are essential for achieving a Euro NCAP 5-star rating.

When it comes to testing systems such as AEB, there is a great likelihood of a collision occurring. This puts test personnel and potentially expensive prototype test vehicles at significant risk of damage or injury. In recent years, balloon cars have been developed to reduce the impact should a collision occur. Although a great improvement, balloon targets still have the disadvantages of bursting on impact in high speed collisions, the need for a tow vehicle, and the lack of realistic motion that can be coordinated with a test vehicle.

The GST consists of a low-profile robotic vehicle (LPRV) and a separate foam panel body styled to look like a standard mid-sized car. It is designed to withstand collision speeds up to 120 km/h, and to do so without damaging the test vehicle or any personnel inside. When a collision occurs, the foam panel body separates from itself and the LPRV, causing minimal impact to the test vehicle. The LPRV can then be driven over as a result of the durable low profile and sloping design, causing the LPRV wheels to retract into the chassis. This protects the suspension of the LPRV and the test vehicle by providing the minimum possible shock input.

Housed within the armoured structure of the LPRV is the inertial navigation system (INS) used for motion control. OxTS’s flagship RT3000 is used to ensure maximum accuracy and reliability in the guidance, navigation and control systems. The INS contains an inertial measurement unit and a high accuracy GPS receiver. The RT blends the inertial and GPS data together to deliver accurate position, velocity, acceleration, and orientation data even in poor GPS environments.

Thanks to the RT, the GST can also coordinate its motion with the test vehicle and adjust its speed and position to ensure meetings at precise, predetermined potential impact locations. This makes it ideal for ADAS tests such as collision mitigation braking systems, forward collision warnings, automatic collision avoidance steering, and vehicle-to-vehicle communication systems.

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