US20140218535A1 - Vehicle vision system using image data transmission and power supply via a coaxial cable - Google Patents

Vehicle vision system using image data transmission and power supply via a coaxial cable Download PDF

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Publication number
US20140218535A1
US20140218535A1 US14/343,936 US201214343936A US2014218535A1 US 20140218535 A1 US20140218535 A1 US 20140218535A1 US 201214343936 A US201214343936 A US 201214343936A US 2014218535 A1 US2014218535 A1 US 2014218535A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
vision system
vehicle
coaxial cable
imaging sensor
camera
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Abandoned
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US14/343,936
Inventor
Joern Ihlenburg
Jens Steigerwald
Michael Dominik Schöppner
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Magna Electronics Inc
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Magna Electronics Inc
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Filing date
Publication date
Priority to US201161537279P priority Critical
Priority to US201161567446P priority
Priority to US201161567150P priority
Priority to US201261653664P priority
Application filed by Magna Electronics Inc filed Critical Magna Electronics Inc
Priority to PCT/US2012/056014 priority patent/WO2013043661A1/en
Priority to US14/343,936 priority patent/US20140218535A1/en
Publication of US20140218535A1 publication Critical patent/US20140218535A1/en
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

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    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N5/00Details of television systems
    • H04N5/222Studio circuitry; Studio devices; Studio equipment ; Cameras comprising an electronic image sensor, e.g. digital cameras, video cameras, TV cameras, video cameras, camcorders, webcams, camera modules for embedding in other devices, e.g. mobile phones, computers or vehicles
    • H04N5/225Television cameras ; Cameras comprising an electronic image sensor, e.g. digital cameras, video cameras, camcorders, webcams, camera modules specially adapted for being embedded in other devices, e.g. mobile phones, computers or vehicles
    • H04N5/232Devices for controlling television cameras, e.g. remote control ; Control of cameras comprising an electronic image sensor
    • H04N5/23203Remote-control signaling for television cameras, cameras comprising an electronic image sensor or for parts thereof, e.g. between main body and another part of camera
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B60VEHICLES IN GENERAL
    • B60RVEHICLES, VEHICLE FITTINGS, OR VEHICLE PARTS, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • B60R16/00Electric or fluid circuits specially adapted for vehicles and not otherwise provided for; Arrangement of elements of electric or fluid circuits specially adapted for vehicles and not otherwise provided for
    • B60R16/02Electric or fluid circuits specially adapted for vehicles and not otherwise provided for; Arrangement of elements of electric or fluid circuits specially adapted for vehicles and not otherwise provided for electric constitutive elements
    • GPHYSICS
    • G08SIGNALLING
    • G08GTRAFFIC CONTROL SYSTEMS
    • G08G1/00Traffic control systems for road vehicles
    • G08G1/16Anti-collision systems
    • G08G1/165Anti-collision systems for passive traffic, e.g. including static obstacles, trees
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01BCABLES; CONDUCTORS; INSULATORS; SELECTION OF MATERIALS FOR THEIR CONDUCTIVE, INSULATING OR DIELECTRIC PROPERTIES
    • H01B1/00Conductors or conductive bodies characterised by the conductive materials; Selection of materials as conductors
    • H01B1/02Conductors or conductive bodies characterised by the conductive materials; Selection of materials as conductors mainly consisting of metals or alloys
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01BCABLES; CONDUCTORS; INSULATORS; SELECTION OF MATERIALS FOR THEIR CONDUCTIVE, INSULATING OR DIELECTRIC PROPERTIES
    • H01B11/00Communication cables or conductors
    • H01B11/18Coaxial cables; Analogous cables having more than one inner conductor within a common outer conductor
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01BCABLES; CONDUCTORS; INSULATORS; SELECTION OF MATERIALS FOR THEIR CONDUCTIVE, INSULATING OR DIELECTRIC PROPERTIES
    • H01B3/00Insulators or insulating bodies characterised by the insulating materials; Selection of materials for their insulating or dielectric properties
    • H01B3/18Insulators or insulating bodies characterised by the insulating materials; Selection of materials for their insulating or dielectric properties mainly consisting of organic substances
    • H01B3/30Insulators or insulating bodies characterised by the insulating materials; Selection of materials for their insulating or dielectric properties mainly consisting of organic substances plastics; resins; waxes
    • H01B3/44Insulators or insulating bodies characterised by the insulating materials; Selection of materials for their insulating or dielectric properties mainly consisting of organic substances plastics; resins; waxes vinyl resins; acrylic resins
    • H01B3/443Insulators or insulating bodies characterised by the insulating materials; Selection of materials for their insulating or dielectric properties mainly consisting of organic substances plastics; resins; waxes vinyl resins; acrylic resins from vinylhalogenides or other halogenoethylenic compounds
    • H01B3/445Insulators or insulating bodies characterised by the insulating materials; Selection of materials for their insulating or dielectric properties mainly consisting of organic substances plastics; resins; waxes vinyl resins; acrylic resins from vinylhalogenides or other halogenoethylenic compounds from vinylfluorides or other fluoroethylenic compounds
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H01BASIC ELECTRIC ELEMENTS
    • H01BCABLES; CONDUCTORS; INSULATORS; SELECTION OF MATERIALS FOR THEIR CONDUCTIVE, INSULATING OR DIELECTRIC PROPERTIES
    • H01B7/00Insulated conductors or cables characterised by their form
    • H01B7/02Disposition of insulation
    • H01B7/0208Cables with several layers of insulating material
    • H01B7/0216Two layers
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N5/00Details of television systems
    • H04N5/222Studio circuitry; Studio devices; Studio equipment ; Cameras comprising an electronic image sensor, e.g. digital cameras, video cameras, TV cameras, video cameras, camcorders, webcams, camera modules for embedding in other devices, e.g. mobile phones, computers or vehicles
    • H04N5/225Television cameras ; Cameras comprising an electronic image sensor, e.g. digital cameras, video cameras, camcorders, webcams, camera modules specially adapted for being embedded in other devices, e.g. mobile phones, computers or vehicles
    • H04N5/232Devices for controlling television cameras, e.g. remote control ; Control of cameras comprising an electronic image sensor
    • H04N5/23241Control of camera operation in relation to power supply
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N5/00Details of television systems
    • H04N5/222Studio circuitry; Studio devices; Studio equipment ; Cameras comprising an electronic image sensor, e.g. digital cameras, video cameras, TV cameras, video cameras, camcorders, webcams, camera modules for embedding in other devices, e.g. mobile phones, computers or vehicles
    • H04N5/225Television cameras ; Cameras comprising an electronic image sensor, e.g. digital cameras, video cameras, camcorders, webcams, camera modules specially adapted for being embedded in other devices, e.g. mobile phones, computers or vehicles
    • H04N5/232Devices for controlling television cameras, e.g. remote control ; Control of cameras comprising an electronic image sensor
    • H04N5/23293Electronic viewfinders
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N7/00Television systems
    • H04N7/10Adaptations for transmission by electrical cable
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N7/00Television systems
    • H04N7/18Closed circuit television systems, i.e. systems in which the signal is not broadcast
    • H04N7/181Closed circuit television systems, i.e. systems in which the signal is not broadcast for receiving images from a plurality of remote sources
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N7/00Television systems
    • H04N7/18Closed circuit television systems, i.e. systems in which the signal is not broadcast
    • H04N7/183Closed circuit television systems, i.e. systems in which the signal is not broadcast for receiving images from a single remote source

Abstract

A vision system for a vehicle includes an imaging sensor disposed at the vehicle and having an exterior field of view. A control is disposed at the vehicle and a coaxial cable is in communication between the imaging sensor and the control. The vision system communicates image data captured by the imaging sensor to the control and supplies power to the imaging sensor via the coaxial cable. The coaxial cable may include an inner core comprising copper, a dielectric medium, a foil screen, an outer conductor comprising copper, a separating layer and an outer sheath. When initially powering up the vision system, a transceiver of the imaging sensor may be tuned to an initial communication mode, which is suitable for communication with at least one of the control, a communication interface of the vision system and a display device of the vision system.

Description

    CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • The present application claims the filing benefit of U.S. provisional applications, Ser. No. 61/653,664, filed May 31, 2012; Ser. No. 61/567,446, filed Dec. 6, 2011; Ser. No. 61/567,150, filed Dec. 6, 2011; and Ser. No. 61/537,279, filed Sep. 21, 2011, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties.
  • FIELD OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention relates to imaging systems or vision systems for vehicles and, more particularly, to a vision system that includes at least one imaging device or camera and high resolution camera data signal transfer.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • Use of imaging sensors in vehicle imaging systems is common and known. Examples of such known systems are described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,949,331; 5,670,935; and/or 5,550,677, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention provides a vision system or imaging system for a vehicle that utilizes one or more cameras to capture images exterior of the vehicle, and provides the communication/data signals, including camera data or image data (main channel), communication data (back channel) and the power supply, over a single or common coaxial cable.
  • Optionally, a system that modulates the signals (including power supply) without reduction in the amplitude may be used to provide enhanced signals over the single or common coaxial cable, may be implemented between the camera and control or ECU or the like.
  • Optionally, a vision system according to the present invention may include a control disposed at the vehicle, and when initially powering up the vision system, a transceiver of the imaging sensor is tuned to an initial communication mode, which is suitable for communication with the control and/or a communication interface of the vision system and/or a display device of the vision system.
  • The present invention also provides a vision system or imaging system for a vehicle that utilizes one or more cameras to capture images exterior of the vehicle, and provides the communication/data signals, including camera data or image data, that may be processed and, responsive to such image processing, the system may detect an object at or near the vehicle and in the path of travel of the vehicle, such as when the vehicle is backing up. In order to calibrate the system and camera or cameras, the present invention provides camera side band data transmission by overlay of calibration data or codes to the sent or communicated image or image data.
  • According to another aspect of the present invention, a vision system for a vehicle includes a camera or image sensor disposed at a vehicle and having a field of view exterior of the vehicle, and a processor operable to process data transmitted by the camera. The camera is operable to automatically transmit calibration data or codes and the processor is operable to receive the calibration data or codes transmitted by the camera. The camera automatically transmits the calibration data or codes when the camera is triggered to transmit the calibration data or codes. The vision system, responsive to receipt of the calibration data or codes, is operable to identify the camera and associated calibration codes or data. The calibration data or codes may comprise an overlay or graphic or pattern overlay in the image data captured by the camera and transmitted by the camera to the processor.
  • Optionally, the camera may automatically transmit the calibration data or codes responsive to an initial activation of the camera and/or the vision system. Optionally, the camera may automatically transmit the calibration data or codes responsive to detection of a particular pattern or the like in the field of view of the camera.
  • These and other objects, advantages, purposes and features of the present invention will become apparent upon review of the following specification in conjunction with the drawings.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • FIG. 1 is a diagram of a state of the art symmetric LVDS transfer and DC supply via twisted pair cable using four independent lines;
  • FIG. 2 is a diagram of a state of the art LVDS transfer and DC supply via a single core coaxial cable with shield, having inductive data/power decoupling and current modulated signals, used in an automotive camera application;
  • FIG. 3 is a schematic of signal generation via a symmetric LVDS driver chip, having pulled one driver side to ground, to be used with a transmitter according FIG. 2;
  • FIG. 4A is a schematic of an asymmetric LVDS transmission and DC supply via a single core coaxial cable with shield, having inductive data/power decoupling and current modulated signals using an asymmetric signal driver, applied in an automotive camera system in accordance with the present invention;
  • FIG. 4B is a schematic of an asymmetric LVDS transmission and DC supply via a single core coaxial cable with shield, having inductive data/power decoupling and current modulated signals using an more simplified asymmetric signal driver and data decoupling filters in comparison to the embodiment shown in FIG. 4A, as applied in an automotive camera system in accordance with the present invention;
  • FIGS. 5 and 6 are schematic layer build ups of state of the art coaxial cable (such as a cable of the type FL09YHBC11Y from Polyflex®), known for use from analog image transmission in automotive and LVDS transmission for home entertainment devices;
  • FIGS. 7A and 8A are schematic layer build ups of coaxial cable, using advanced materials for improved bending capabilities and having automotive compatible signal attenuation;
  • FIGS. 7B and 8B are second examples of schematic layer build-ups of coaxial cable, using advanced materials for improved bending capabilities and having automotive compatible signal attenuation;
  • FIGS. 7C and 8C are third examples of schematic layer build-ups of coaxial cable, using another set of advanced materials for improved bending capabilities and having automotive compatible signal attenuation;
  • FIG. 9 is a diagram of signal attenuation over frequency of a state of the art HSD (high speed data) twisted pair cable (such as a Leoni Dacar 535-2 cable);
  • FIG. 10 is a diagram of signal attenuation over frequency of a coaxial cable according FIGS. 7 and 8, in accordance with the present invention;
  • FIG. 11 is an example of a n×m matrix for minimizing the amount of necessary camera connector interface standards ‘n’ to cable variants ‘m’;
  • FIG. 12 shows a front view of a common (Fakra™) single core coaxial cable connector interface according to the present invention, as applied on an automotive camera printed circuit board (PCB);
  • FIG. 13 shows a rear view of a common (Fakra™) single core coaxial cable connector interface according to the present invention, as applied on an automotive camera PCB, with the interface (m) optionally used for several data transmission standards (n) according to the matrix of FIG. 11;
  • FIG. 14 is a plan view of a vehicle with a vision system and imaging sensors or cameras that provide exterior fields of view in accordance with the present invention;
  • FIG. 15 is an example of a calibration set which may be transferred through an image channel, coded by a color pattern divided up into three consecutive captured images or frames so the code images are different to each other, shown as black and white instead of colors for clarity;
  • FIG. 16 is an example of a time scheme transferring camera data within the first three frames, such as, for example, during initialization, shown with dark gray: camera data; light gray: image data; and white: no data;
  • FIG. 17 is an example of a time scheme transferring camera data during a vertical blanking interval, with the time of the blanking interval being relatively small compared to the time it takes to transfer an image frame, shown with dark gray: camera data; light gray: image data; and white: no data); and
  • FIG. 18 is the zoomed out timeframe of the vertical blanking time interval of FIG. 17, shown with 16 data bit being transferred within one interval, and shown with dark gray: camera data; light gray: image data; very dark gray: high pulse (positive bits) within vertical blanking interval; and white: no data).
  • DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
  • Low-voltage differential signaling (LVDS) is known, such as described in U.S. Pat. No. 7,843,235 (and such as shown in FIG. 1), and EP Publication No. EP000002247047A1 (asymmetric LVDS, such as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3), and asymmetric LVDS drive stage chips and automotive applications have been proposed, such as by EgcoLogic® (see http://www.eqcologic.com, LVDS driver via coax application examples for automotive cameras), which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties.
  • Coaxial cables used for LVDS are known from Figures in EP000002247047A1 and the cable itself by cable supplier specifications, such as, for example, a Polyflex® type of cable commercially available as FL09YHBC11Y (see FIGS. 5 and 6 and Table 1).
  • Automotive high resolution camera data signal (stream) transfer for cameras in automotive doors (side mirrors) and hatches cables must be robust due to bending. The data signal transfer and the screening attenuation must be sufficient to cope with automotive EMC tests and must attain a high enough data rate. The non coaxial HSD-cables may provide a good screening attenuation (see FIG. 9), but are typically much more expansive, are typically hard to assemble connectors, are typically hard to maintain in workshops, and are typically worse in bending capabilities (the twisted pair multi core wires tend to lose their arrangement, so the dielectric performance diminishes).
  • Single core coaxial cables are highly symmetric. Because of this, such a cable provides enhanced bending capabilities than those of multi-core coaxial cables and (non coaxial) HSD-cables because it's structural geometrics do not get out of order as readily. The attenuation performance is comparable to that of HSD cables. The connectors are easy to apply and are readily maintained. Thus, there is a reduced desire to use coaxial cables for automotive high resolution camera data signal transfer.
  • Asymmetric signal transfer with LVDS + and − driver stages with one driver side set to ground over 50 ohms (such as shown in FIG. 3) show the disadvantage of a 50 percent signal strength loss. State of the art coaxial cables hardly meet automotive requirements in combination of bending capability and attenuation performance.
  • Thus, enhanced signal transfer is desired, and this may be achieved by using a single side driver stage for asymmetric signal line transfer, such as shown in FIG. 4A. As shown in FIG. 4A, the negative line driver has been eliminated, which simplifies the circuit. Thus, the signal to noise ratio of the transmitter gets improved substantially (such as by nearly 100 percent or thereabouts).
  • To divide data (AC) from supply currents (DC) decoupling filters are in use. The may filter both the ground/negative signal line (coaxial cable shield) and the power/positive signal line as to be seen in FIG. 4A) or more simplified just one node as to be seen in FIG. 4B.
  • The decoupling filters maintain inductors. As higher the signal frequency becomes chosen as smaller the filter inductors can be chosen according following equations:

  • Z=ωL

  • ω=2*π*f

  • Z=2*λ*f*L
  • It is also desirable to provide enhanced bending capability and attenuation performance for automotive applications. This can be achieved by using a fluorinated ethylene propylene (FEP) perfluoroethylene-propylene plastic in the insulation layer of LVDS coaxial cables. Such a construction provides enhanced elasticity, and has comparable dielectric performance (such as shown in FIG. 10), and makes the cable more robust on repeated bending. Additionally, when combined by using a PUR-PVC material in the sheath, the cable construction also makes the cable easier to bend and mechanically more robust (see FIGS. 7A and 8A and Table 2).
  • Enhanced bending capability and attenuation can also become achieved by using a PP (poly-propylene) foam skin as a dielectric medium and optionally an aluminum foil instead of a separating fleece. Such a construction provides enhanced elasticity, and improves the attenuation further due to the additional shielding layer 1.5 (see FIGS. 7B and 8B and Table 3). Optionally, and with reference to FIGS. 7C and 8C and Table 4, another schematic of layer build-ups of coaxial cable is shown, using another set of advanced materials for improved bending capabilities and having automotive compatible signal attenuation, in accordance with the present invention.
  • Such cables achieve high bending when the bending radius is higher than about 10 times the diameter, and are automotive temperature (such as about −40 degrees C. to about 125 degrees C.) capable. The attenuation stays below around 100 dB (nominal) at about 1 GHz, and about 150 dB at about 2 GHz and about 180 dB at about 3 GHz per 100 m cable or thereabouts.
  • Thus, and with reference to FIGS. 4A and 4B, a vehicle may an imaging system or vision system 10 that includes at least one imaging sensor or camera 12, which capture images (such as images interior or exterior of the vehicle), and which communicates image data to a control system or control or processor or display system 14 via a communication link 16. The communication link 16 comprises a single coaxial cable that communicates power supply to the camera 12 and camera or image data from the camera 12 to the control 14. The present invention thus provides a means to communicate or send all data, including camera data or captured image data (main channel), communication data (back channel) and the power supply over a single or common link or coaxial cable.
  • Devices or systems supporting coaxial cables are developing. With full duplex devices, the system can send just over the low-voltage differential signaling (LVDS)+ pin with LVDS− pin over 50 Ohm to ground. Thus, the system may provide only about half of the signal amplitude, but this is sufficient to send at least about 1.6 Gbps over about a 15 m coaxial cable without any errors. Various suitable coaxial cables may be used to pass the OEM requirements. For example, the system may include serial link chipsets at the ends of the cable or link, such as, for example, a MAX9259 chipset at the camera end of the link and a MAX 9260 deserializer chipset at the display end of the link, such as are commercially available from Maxim of Sunnyvale, Calif., which provides a gigabit multimedia serial link (GMSL) technology. The MAX9259 serializer may pair with the MAX9260 deserializer to form a complete digital serial link for joint transmission of high-speed video, audio, and control data.
  • The chipsets may be implemented with a suitable coaxial cable, such as, for example, a 50 Ohm coaxial cable that provides up to about a 12 dB loss. Suitable cables include, for example, a Leoni Dacar 037 cable, a Leoni Dacar 320 cable, a Leoni Dacar 642 cable, a Leoni Dacar 380 cable, a LEONI Dacar® 4xx-KOAX-C-50-1,52-2,8/T125 cable, a Kroschu 64918930 cable, a Kroschu 64924651 cable or a Gebauer & Griller FL09YHBC11Y 0,35(0,26)2,1 KX 50/1 cable, or the like.
  • Optionally, a vision system may incorporate a system that provides bidirectional full duplex communication over a single coax cable. For example, the system may comprise a EQC0850SC single coax transceiver/system (commercially available from Eqcologic USA of Flower Mound, Tex. Such a system is designed to simultaneously transmit and receive signals on a single 75 Ohm coax cable up to about 1.25 Gbps in both directions. The power supply can be delivered in parallel over the same coax by a current up to about 900 mA. Such a system is compatible with LVDS, CML and other NRZ differential signaling means. Such a device or system may modulate all signals inclusive of power supply to one signal which can be communicated or sent over a single or common coax cable with low or minimal loss of signal amplitude (about 100 dB (nominal) at about 1 GHz, about 150 dB at about 2 GHz and about 180 dB at about 3 GHz per 100 m cable or thereabouts) and without any requirement to have a full duplex system. Optionally, the vision system may incorporate any suitable coax cable, such as a 75 Ohm coax cable or a 50 Ohm coax cable or the like. The present invention thus supplies DC power and image data over the same coaxial line in an automotive vision system.
  • In automotive vision and safety cameras, it is known to provide a single data communication transmitter/transceiver (-type) for transmitting images and/or control data to a receiving unit, which may comprise a display, a mobile device, a head unit or any other image processing device or the like. The image processing device typically has one corresponding interface matching to the transmitting interface (bus) type. The vision system may include a digital bus or an analog interface or both.
  • Typically, an expensive part of an automotive vision system's hardware supply is the logistics. Instead of adapting the interfaces of equal cameras or visual detecting devices or the like (such as cameras or imaging sensors or the like) to different image processing device's (different) interfaces or having two interface plugs on one camera (which takes a lot of precious space, limits design flexibility and is more costly), a more lean and cheaper solution is on demand.
  • The present invention provides a vision system that has a camera that is adaptable for interfacing with different processors and/or control devices or the like.
  • (1) It is acknowledged that there are a number (“n”) of video standards (digital and analog) and a number (“m”) of kinds of video cables and connectors. Putting m×n into relation there is a finite amount of combinations which cover all demands for a camera interface. The present invention provides a solution that has a small amount of camera variants which differ in the kind of connectors. Cameras typically have in common that they need at least two different transceiver chips on board or transceivers which are capable of maintaining more than one transmission protocol (or transmission standard or norm) or a mix of these, both analog and/or digital. Also, all kinds of emulating of protocols meant by that.
  • (2) Because of this, the cameras can be common or kept identical or substantially identical, if the cameras have modes that are switched by parameters and that are adjusted to adapt a camera to a specific display device, image controller or head unit or the like. The present invention provides a vision system that, when powering up the vision system, such as in an initial phase, preferably at the first activation of the camera or system or after replacing a camera, the camera's transceiver (or transmitter) gets tuned into an initial or primitive communication mode, which can be maintained by every display device and camera's communication interface (hardware and software).
  • (3) According to (2), above, the parameters needed for setting up the vision system's camera(s), especially the set up of the chosen communication protocol, may be transmitted in the primitive mode initial phase.
  • (4) According to (3), above, after receiving the code for the chosen communication protocol (mode), the camera and the display device continue to communicate via the chosen communication protocol using the according transceiver hardware mentioned above.
  • (5) According to (2), above, the cameras parameters or a part of it, may get held and/or updated in the display device.
  • (6) According to (2), above, in the initial phase, the camera is (or the cameras are) running a self configuring routine and are initializing itself/themselves by image data or other preset parameters or sensing data or data transmitted to them by any kind of data transmission. The cameras may communicate between each other and/or over the display device for that.
  • (7) According to (6), above, the result of the self configuration is to determine on which place the camera is mounted (at the vehicle).
  • (8) According to (7), above, the result of the self configuration is furthermore to do a stitching and alignment calibration, especially for calibrating means of determining magnitude and distances.
  • (9) According to (1), above, the different connectors may comprise coaxial cable connectors (Interfaces) or RJ45 or the like.
  • (10) According to (1), above, the different cables may comprise coaxial cable, shielded twisted pair (STP), unshielded twisted pair, USB cable, HDMI cable or the like.
  • (11) According to (1), above, the different transmission protocols or standards may comprise NTSC, PAL, SECAM, Ethernet, Gigabit Multimedia Serial Link (GMSL), FDP-Link I, FDP-Link II, FDP-Link III, Pixel Link, USB, CAN, LIN, Flexray, Devicenet, Interbus, Modbus, Profibus, ASI, composite video, S-Video, SCART, component video, D-Terminal, VGA, HDMI, DVI, HDCP or other according the EIA/CEA-861 standard, or the like.
  • (12) According to (1), above, when enabling one transceiver on the camera, the other transceiver may be disabled.
  • (13) According to (12), above, the disabled transceiver outputs are high impedance or have filters making sure that the signals of the enabled transmitter are not influenced by the driver stages circuits of disabled transmitters, which share the same connector nodes.
  • (14) According to (10), above, the transmission cable may also be used as power line for supplying the camera and/or other devices or sensors.
  • (15) According to (10), above, the transmission cable grid between camera(s) display device(s), power sources, sensor(s), actuators, and the like may be set up as a ring, a star, or a mixture of both.
  • (16) According to (15), above, there may be also wireless cameras, mobile infotainment and other devices on the grid.
  • (17) According to (16), above, there may be also bus gateways in between the grids nodes.
  • Thus, the present invention provides an interface, connector and transmission cable standardization on automotive camera systems. The vision system of the present invention incorporates one or more cameras that are configured or adapted to communicate with various types of communication or data transfer cables and various types of transmission protocols. The cameras for a given system and/or for various systems on different vehicles, can be common or kept identical or substantially identical, and the modes are switched by parameters becoming adjusted to adapt a camera to a specific display device, image controller or head unit or the like.
  • The present invention also provides a vehicle vision system and/or driver assist system and/or object detection system and/or alert system operates that is operable to capture images exterior of the vehicle and to process the captured image data to detect objects at or near the vehicle and in the predicted path of the vehicle, such as to assist a driver of the vehicle in maneuvering the vehicle in a rearward direction. The vision system includes a processor that is operable to receive image data from a camera and may receive calibration data or codes from the camera when the camera is initially powered or activated or when the camera is otherwise triggered to send or transmit the calibration data (such as responsive to a triggering event such as an initial activation of the camera or system or an input to the camera or system or a detection of a particular pattern or the like in the field of view of the camera), such that the system can identify the camera and its calibration codes such that the vision system may be automatically calibrated for operation, without any manual inputs or reading of physical labels or the like at the camera.
  • Referring now to FIG. 14, a vehicle 110 includes an imaging system or vision system 112 that includes one or more imaging sensors or cameras (such as a rearward facing imaging sensor or camera 114 a and/or a forwardly facing camera 114 b at the front (or at the windshield) of the vehicle, and/or a sidewardly/rearwardly facing camera 114 c, 114 b at the sides of the vehicle), which capture images exterior of the vehicle, with the cameras having a lens for focusing images at or onto an imaging array or imaging plane of the camera (FIG. 14). The vision system 112 includes a control or processor 118 that is operable to process image data captured by the cameras and may provide displayed images at a display device 116 for viewing by the driver of the vehicle (although shown in FIG. 14 as being part of or incorporated in or at an interior rearview mirror assembly 120 of the vehicle, the control and/or the display device may be disposed elsewhere at or in the vehicle) and a control device (MCU) 122. The rear facing image sensor is connected to the MCU by a monodirectional data line or bus 124, and the display device 116 is connected to the control device 122 via a data line or bus 126 (the image giving devices 114 b, 114 c, 114 d may also be connected to the control device 122 but their data lines are not shown in FIG. 14). Optionally, the control or processor of the vision system may process captured image data to detect objects, such as objects to the rear of the subject or equipped vehicle during a reversing maneuver, or such as approaching or following vehicles or vehicles at a side lane adjacent to the subject or equipped vehicle or the like.
  • Vehicle vision system cameras have interfaces to send or transmit or communicate image data and further channels to communicate control and configuration data to image processing units, head units or display units or the like. These units may be part of the vehicle's sensor cluster or driver assistance system or the like.
  • In order to enhance cost efficiency, vision system cameras typically have as few interfaces as possible. Some known cameras have just an image output, such as an NTSC output or the like, but no further data output. Such cameras are typically calibrated during their assembly (by the supplier). The calibration data may be provided to the OEM installing those cameras on vehicles. For example, the data may be labeled onto the housing of the camera, such as by lasering, sticking, printing and/or the like, or in the bar codes in a one dimensional (1D) code or a two dimensional (2D) matrix and/or the like. These can be read by scanners at the OEM's vehicle assembly line when installing the cameras on or at the vehicles. Alternatively, every camera's calibration data set can be stored in a database which may be accessed by the OEM to read the according data set at the time the camera is assembled to a vehicle on the OEM's vehicle assembly line. Such a process necessitates identifying every camera. Hence, at least the serial number must be identified on each camera that is installed on a vehicle.
  • In cases where a vehicle vision system's camera has to be replaced by a repair service, the calibration set up of the old camera has to be replaced by a calibration set up of the new camera. This is typically to be done manually at the vehicle service station or repair shop.
  • The data handling of vision system camera's calibration sets is simplified by the present invention. The necessity for printing, installing or sticking labels to identify each camera or its specific data set may be obviated or eliminated. The camera of the vehicle vision system of the present invention is enabled to automatically transfer it's calibration data set to a vision processing unit, head unit or display device or the like, especially after servicing of the camera or vehicle vision system.
  • Vehicle vision system's cameras that have just one port, such as an NTFS image channel, shall communicate over the port and communication link with the vision head unit or the like. Identification of the camera and parameters of the camera and especially the calibration data sets, which may be stored in a camera internal non volatile memory as a bitmap, will be transferred to and received and understood by the head unit or control or processor. By that, the camera calibration can be transmitted automatically on the customer (OEM) line or after replacing or servicing the vision system and/or individual camera or cameras.
  • In accordance with the present invention, the camera identification, parameters and calibration sets of vision system cameras can be stored in an internal non volatile memory, such as a bitmap or bitmap like pattern. The calibration set or sets is/are transferred to an image processing device through the image channel, such as a NTSC, NTFS, PAL or SECAM channel or protocol. The calibration set that is transferred through the image channel gets coded by a specific manner of coding. For example, the transferred or transmitted calibration set may be coded by an image pattern from which the camera's calibration can be restored by the receiving image processing device.
  • Optionally, the transferred or transmitted calibration set may be coded by using bar codes which appear as an overlay to the image. For example, the calibration code may be coded by a 1D bar code, or by a 2D matrix code or the like. Optionally, the calibration code overlay may comprise a color value or color tone or color pattern or the like.
  • The calibration data set is coded by data conjuncted, bound or added to the image or image data picked up or captured by the camera. The calibration is bound to the image picked up by the camera via any suitable means, such as by an steganography algorithm or the like. Symmetric steganography finds use here, having private keys on the coding/encrypting side and on the uncoding/uncrypting side. Asymmetric steganography finds use here, having a private key on the coding/encrypting side and a public key on the uncoding/uncrypting side.
  • The calibration code may be transferred or transmitted or communicated at any time. For example, the calibration code may be transferred in the first image's line or frame, and/or the calibration code may be transferred in the last image's line or frame, and/or the calibration code may be transferred in the first and last images' lines or frames. Optionally, the calibration code overlay may be placed or located in a corner of an image (or elsewhere in the image).
  • Optionally, the code may be transferred instead of an image picked up by the camera. For example, the code may be transferred instead of an image for a specific time or the code may be transferred instead of an image at a specific time. Optionally, the calibration code image may comprise a color code, such as a color value or color tone or color pattern or the like.
  • Optionally, the calibration code may be transferred within the ‘vertical blanking interval’ (pause time between two frames) or separated in parts within several blanking intervals, which may be consecutive, repeated by a certain number of intervals or with gaps in between. Typical systems may be able to transfer about 6 bytes during one vertical blanking interval and about 900 bytes may be transferred when replacing one image frame by one data frame.
  • Optionally, the calibration code may be transferred as or within the first image or frame captured or transmitted by the camera, such as when the camera is initially powered up. The code may be transferred from the first image for a specific time or may be transferred as or within one image at a specific time. Optionally, the calibration code may be transferred as or within several images. Optionally, the same pattern or code may be transferred as or within several consecutive images or frames (such as shown in FIG. 15), such as transferred as or within several consecutive images at a specific time or transferred as or within several consecutive images at several specific times of a time pattern.
  • Optionally, and with reference to FIG. 16, a time scheme transfers camera data within the first three frames, such as, for example, during initialization. As shown in FIG. 16, the dark gray portions represent camera data, the light gray portions represent image data and the white portions represent no data. Optionally, and with reference to FIG. 17, a time scheme transferring camera data during a vertical blanking interval is shown, with the time of the blanking interval being relatively small compared to the time it takes to transfer an image frame. As shown in FIG. 17, the dark gray portions represent camera data, the light gray portions represent image data and the white portions represent no data. Optionally, and with reference to FIG. 18, an enlarged timeframe of the vertical blanking time interval of FIG. 17 is shown, with 16 data bit being transferred within one interval. As shown in FIG. 18, the dark gray portions represent camera data, the light gray portions represent image data, the very dark gray portions represent high pulse (positive bits) within the vertical blanking interval and the white portions represent no data.
  • Optionally, the same calibration code may be transferred as or within several images (such as non-consecutive images) at a specific time pattern. Optionally, the code may be divided up into several consecutive images so the code images are different to each other. Optionally, the coded consecutive images are embedded to a flick.
  • The code may be transferred via any suitable protocol or signal. For example, the code may be transferred as a non NTFS signal, such as a non NTFS signal that is out of the NTFS bandwidth, or such as a non NTFS superpositioned to the NTFS signal. Optionally, the code may be transferred instead of the NTFS signal. Optionally, the code may be transferred as a side band of the NTFS signal.
  • Optionally, the camera may be set to its calibration mode responsive to triggering event, such as an input or detection of a code or pattern placed in the field of view of the camera via processing of image data captured by the camera. For example, the camera may be set to its calibration mode (and not exclusively set into the calibration mode) by being shown an optical code. Such an optical code may comprise any suitable pattern or code, such as a specific pattern, such as a bar code or a two dimensional (2D) matrix code or a color code or a color value or color tone or the image's mean value color value or color. The code may be transferred within several images. Optionally, the camera may be set to its calibration mode (and not exclusively set into the calibration mode) by a signal or on/off switch pattern at it's power line.
  • Therefore, the present invention provides a vision system for a vehicle that includes a processor or head unit and a camera or cameras mounted at the vehicle. The processor or head unit is operable to receive calibration data or codes from the camera that are automatically transmitted by the camera when the camera is activated or when the camera is otherwise triggered to send or transmit the calibration data (such as responsive to an input or responsive to detection of a particular pattern or the like in the field of view of the camera). The vision system thus is operable to identify the camera or cameras and associated calibration codes such that the vision system may be automatically calibrated for operation, without any manual inputs or reading of physical labels or the like at the camera.
  • The camera or sensor may comprise any suitable camera or sensor. Optionally, the camera may comprise a “smart camera” that includes the imaging sensor array and associated circuitry and image processing circuitry and electrical connectors and the like as part of a camera module, such as by utilizing aspects of the vision systems described in U.S. provisional applications, Ser. No. 61/563,965, filed Nov. 28, 2011; and/or Ser. No. 61/565,713, filed Dec. 1, 2011, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties.
  • The vehicle may include any type of sensor or sensors, such as imaging sensors or radar sensors or lidar sensors or ultrasonic sensors or the like. The imaging sensor or camera may capture image data for image processing and may comprise any suitable camera or sensing device, such as, for example, an array of a plurality of photosensor elements arranged in 640 columns and 480 rows (a 640×480 imaging array), with a respective lens focusing images onto respective portions of the array. The photosensor array may comprise a plurality of photosensor elements arranged in a photosensor array having rows and columns. The logic and control circuit of the imaging sensor may function in any known manner, such as in the manner described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,550,677; 5,877,897; 6,498,620; 5,670,935; 5,796,094; and/or 6,396,397, and/or U.S. provisional applications, Ser. No. 61/696,416, filed Sep. 4, 2012; Ser. No. 61/682,995, filed Aug. 14, 2012; Ser. No. 61/682,486, filed Aug. 13, 2012; Ser. No. 61/680,883, filed Aug. 8, 2012; Ser. No. 61/678,375, filed Aug. 1, 2012; Ser. No. 61/676,405, filed Jul. 27, 2012; Ser. No. 61/666,146, filed Jun. 29, 2012; Ser. No. 61/653,665, filed May 31, 2012; Ser. No. 61/653,664, filed May 31, 2012; Ser. No. 61/648,744, filed May 18, 2012; Ser. No. 61/624,507, filed Apr. 16, 2012; Ser. No. 61/616,126, filed Mar. 27, 2012; Ser. No. 61/615,410, filed Mar. 26, 2012; Ser. No. 61/613,651, filed Mar. 21, 2012; Ser. No. 61/607,229, filed Mar. 6, 2012; Ser. No. 61/605,409, filed Mar. 1, 2012; Ser. No. 61/602,878, filed Feb. 24, 2012; Ser. No. 61/602,876, filed Feb. 24, 2012; Ser. No. 61/600,205, filed Feb. 17, 2012; Ser. No. 61/588,833, filed Jan. 20, 2012; Ser. No. 61/583,381, filed Jan. 5, 2012; Ser. No. 61/579,682, filed Dec. 23, 2011; Ser. No. 61/570,017, filed Dec. 13, 2011; Ser. No. 61/568,791, filed Dec. 9, 2011; Ser. No. 61/567,446, filed Dec. 6, 2011; Ser. No. 61/559,970, filed Nov. 15, 2011; and/or Ser. No. 61/552,167, filed Oct. 27, 2011, and/or PCT Application No. PCT/CA2012/000378, filed Apr. 25, 2012 (Attorney Docket MAG04 FP1819(PCT)), and/or PCT Application No. PCT/US2012/048800, filed Jul. 30, 2012 (Attorney Docket MAG04 FP-1908(PCT)), and/or PCT Application No. PCT/US2012/048110, filed Jul. 25, 2012 (Attorney Docket MAG04 FP-1907(PCT)), and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 13/534,657, filed Jun. 27, 2012 (Attorney Docket MAG04 P-1892), which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties. The system may communicate with other communication systems via any suitable means, such as by utilizing aspects of the systems described in PCT Application No. PCT/US10/038,477, filed Jun. 14, 2010, and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 13/202,005, filed Aug. 17, 2011 (Attorney Docket MAG04 P-1595), and/or U.S. provisional applications, Ser. No. 61/650,667, filed May 23, 2012; Ser. No. 61/579,682, filed Dec. 23, 2011; Ser. No. 61/565,713, filed Dec. 1, 2011, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties.
  • The imaging device and control and image processor and any associated illumination source, if applicable, may comprise any suitable components, and may utilize aspects of the cameras and vision systems described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,550,677; 5,877,897; 6,498,620; 5,670,935; 5,796,094; 6,396,397; 6,806,452; 6,690,268; 7,005,974; 7,123,168; 7,004,606; 6,946,978; 7,038,577; 6,353,392; 6,320,176; 6,313,454; and 6,824,281, and/or International Publication No. WO 2010/099416, published Sep. 2, 2010, and/or PCT Application No. PCT/US10/47256, filed Aug. 31, 2010, and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 12/508,840, filed Jul. 24, 2009, and published Jan. 28, 2010 as U.S. Pat. Publication No. US 2010-0020170; and/or PCT Application No. PCT/US2012/048110, filed Jul. 25, 2012 (Attorney Docket MAG04 FP-1907(PCT)), and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 13/534,657, filed Jun. 27, 2012 (Attorney Docket MAG04 P-1892), which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties. The camera or cameras may comprise any suitable cameras or imaging sensors or camera modules, and may utilize aspects of the cameras or sensors described in U.S. patent application Ser. No. 12/091,359, filed Apr. 24, 2008 and published Oct. 1, 2009 as U.S. Publication No. US-2009-0244361; and/or Ser. No. 13/260,400, filed Sep. 26, 2011 (Attorney Docket MAG04 P-1757), and/or U.S. Pat. Nos. 7,965,336 and/or 7,480,149, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties. The imaging array sensor may comprise any suitable sensor, and may utilize various imaging sensors or imaging array sensors or cameras or the like, such as a CMOS imaging array sensor, a CCD sensor or other sensors or the like, such as the types described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,550,677; 5,670,935; 5,760,962; 5,715,093; 5,877,897; 6,922,292; 6,757,109; 6,717,610; 6,590,719; 6,201,642; 6,498,620; 5,796,094; 6,097,023; 6,320,176; 6,559,435; 6,831,261; 6,806,452; 6,396,397; 6,822,563; 6,946,978; 7,339,149; 7,038,577; 7,004,606; and/or 7,720,580, and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/534,632, filed May 11, 2005, now U.S. Pat. No. 7,965,336; and/or PCT Application No. PCT/US2008/076022, filed Sep. 11, 2008 and published Mar. 19, 2009 as International Publication No. WO/2009/036176, and/or PCT Application No. PCT/US2008/078700, filed Oct. 3, 2008 and published Apr. 9, 2009 as International Publication No. WO/2009/046268, which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties.
  • The camera module and circuit chip or board and imaging sensor may be implemented and operated in connection with various vehicular vision-based systems, and/or may be operable utilizing the principles of such other vehicular systems, such as a vehicle headlamp control system, such as the type disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,796,094; 6,097,023; 6,320,176; 6,559,435; 6,831,261; 7,004,606; 7,339,149; and/or 7,526,103, which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties, a rain sensor, such as the types disclosed in commonly assigned U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,353,392; 6,313,454; 6,320,176; and/or 7,480,149, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties, a vehicle vision system, such as a forwardly, sidewardly or rearwardly directed vehicle vision system utilizing principles disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,550,677; 5,670,935; 5,760,962; 5,877,897; 5,949,331; 6,222,447; 6,302,545; 6,396,397; 6,498,620; 6,523,964; 6,611,202; 6,201,642; 6,690,268; 6,717,610; 6,757,109; 6,802,617; 6,806,452; 6,822,563; 6,891,563; 6,946,978; and/or 7,859,565, which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties, a trailer hitching aid or tow check system, such as the type disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 7,005,974, which is hereby incorporated herein by reference in its entirety, a reverse or sideward imaging system, such as for a lane change assistance system or lane departure warning system or for a blind spot or object detection system, such as imaging or detection systems of the types disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 7,720,580; 7,038,577; 5,929,786 and/or 5,786,772, and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/239,980, filed Sep. 30, 2005, now U.S. Pat. No. 7,881,496, and/or U.S. provisional applications, Ser. No. 60/628,709, filed Nov. 17, 2004; Ser. No. 60/614,644, filed Sep. 30, 2004; Ser. No. 60/618,686, filed Oct. 14, 2004; Ser. No. 60/638,687, filed Dec. 23, 2004, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties, a video device for internal cabin surveillance and/or video telephone function, such as disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,760,962; 5,877,897; 6,690,268; and/or 7,370,983, and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/538,724, filed Jun. 13, 2005 and published Mar. 9, 2006 as U.S. Publication No. US-2006-0050018, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties, a traffic sign recognition system, a system for determining a distance to a leading or trailing vehicle or object, such as a system utilizing the principles disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,396,397 and/or 7,123,168, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties, and/or the like.
  • Optionally, the circuit board or chip may include circuitry for the imaging array sensor and or other electronic accessories or features, such as by utilizing compass-on-a-chip or EC driver-on-a-chip technology and aspects such as described in U.S. Pat. No. 7,255,451 and/or U.S. Pat. No. 7,480,149; and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/226,628, filed Sep. 14, 2005 and published Mar. 23, 2006 as U.S. Publication No. US-2006-0061008, and/or Ser. No. 12/578,732, filed Oct. 14, 2009 (Attorney Docket DON01 P-1564), which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties.
  • Optionally, the vision system may include a display for displaying images captured by one or more of the imaging sensors for viewing by the driver of the vehicle while the driver is normally operating the vehicle. Optionally, for example, the vision system may include a video display device disposed at or in the interior rearview mirror assembly of the vehicle, such as by utilizing aspects of the video mirror display systems described in U.S. Pat. No. 6,690,268 and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 13/333,337, filed Dec. 21, 2011 (Attorney Docket DON01 P-1797), which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties. The video mirror display may comprise any suitable devices and systems and optionally may utilize aspects of the compass display systems described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 7,370,983; 7,329,013; 7,308,341; 7,289,037; 7,249,860; 7,004,593; 4,546,551; 5,699,044; 4,953,305; 5,576,687; 5,632,092; 5,677,851; 5,708,410; 5,737,226; 5,802,727; 5,878,370; 6,087,953; 6,173,508; 6,222,460; 6,513,252; and/or 6,642,851, and/or European patent application, published Oct. 11, 2000 under Publication No. EP 0 1043566, and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/226,628, filed Sep. 14, 2005 and published Mar. 23, 2006 as U.S. Publication No. US-2006-0061008, which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties. Optionally, the video mirror display screen or device may be operable to display images captured by a rearward viewing camera of the vehicle during a reversing maneuver of the vehicle (such as responsive to the vehicle gear actuator being placed in a reverse gear position or the like) to assist the driver in backing up the vehicle, and optionally may be operable to display the compass heading or directional heading character or icon when the vehicle is not undertaking a reversing maneuver, such as when the vehicle is being driven in a forward direction along a road (such as by utilizing aspects of the display system described in PCT Application No. PCT/US2011/056295, filed Oct. 14, 2011 and published Apr. 19, 2012 as International Publication No. WO 2012/051500, which is hereby incorporated herein by reference in its entirety). Optionally, the vision system may provide a display of a top-down view or birds-eye view of the vehicle or a surround view at the vehicle, such as by utilizing aspects of the vision systems described in PCT Application No. PCT/US10/25545, filed Feb. 26, 2010 and published on Sep. 2, 2010 as International Publication No. WO 2010/099416, and/or PCT Application No. PCT/US10/47256, filed Aug. 31, 2010 and published Mar. 10, 2011 as International Publication No. WO 2011/028686, and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 13/333,337, filed Dec. 21, 2011 (Attorney Docket DON01 P-1797), and/or PCT Application No. PCT/CA2012/000378, filed Apr. 25, 2012 (Attorney Docket MAG04 FP1819(PCT)), and/or U.S. provisional application Ser. No. 61/559,970, filed Nov. 15, 2011, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties.
  • Optionally, the video mirror display may be disposed rearward of and behind the reflective element assembly and may comprise a display such as the types disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,530,240; 6,329,925; 7,626,749; 7,581,859; 7,338,177; 7,274,501; 7,255,451; 7,195,381; 7,184,190; 5,668,663; 5,724,187 and/or 6,690,268, and/or in U.S. patent application Ser. No. 12/091,525, filed Apr. 25, 2008, now U.S. Pat. No. 7,855,755; Ser. No. 11/226,628, filed Sep. 14, 2005 and published Mar. 23, 2006 as U.S. Publication No. US-2006-0061008; and/or Ser. No. 10/538,724, filed Jun. 13, 2005 and published Mar. 9, 2006 as U.S. Publication No. US-2006-0050018, which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties. The display is viewable through the reflective element when the display is activated to display information. The display element may be any type of display element, such as a vacuum fluorescent (VF) display element, a light emitting diode (LED) display element, such as an organic light emitting diode (OLED) or an inorganic light emitting diode, an electroluminescent (EL) display element, a liquid crystal display (LCD) element, a video screen display element or backlit thin film transistor (TFT) display element or the like, and may be operable to display various information (as discrete characters, icons or the like, or in a multi-pixel manner) to the driver of the vehicle, such as passenger side inflatable restraint (PSIR) information, tire pressure status, and/or the like. The mirror assembly and/or display may utilize aspects described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 7,184,190; 7,255,451; 7,446,924 and/or 7,338,177, which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties. The thicknesses and materials of the coatings on the substrates of the reflective element may be selected to provide a desired color or tint to the mirror reflective element, such as a blue colored reflector, such as is known in the art and such as described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,910,854; 6,420,036; and/or 7,274,501, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties.
  • Optionally, the display or displays and any associated user inputs may be associated with various accessories or systems, such as, for example, a tire pressure monitoring system or a passenger air bag status or a garage door opening system or a telematics system or any other accessory or system of the mirror assembly or of the vehicle or of an accessory module or console of the vehicle, such as an accessory module or console of the types described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 7,289,037; 6,877,888; 6,824,281; 6,690,268; 6,672,744; 6,386,742; and 6,124,886, and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/538,724, filed Jun. 13, 2005 and published Mar. 9, 2006 as U.S. Publication No. US-2006-0050018, which are hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties.
  • The display or displays may comprise a video display and may utilize aspects of the video display devices or modules described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,690,268; 7,184,190; 7,274,501; 7,370,983; and/or 7,446,650, and/or U.S. patent application Ser. No. 12/091,525, filed Apr. 25, 2008, now U.S. Pat. No. 7,855,755; and/or Ser. No. 10/538,724, filed Jun. 13, 2005 and published Mar. 9, 2006 as U.S. Publication No. US-2006-0050018, which are all hereby incorporated herein by reference in their entireties. The video display may be operable to display images captured by one or more imaging sensors or cameras at the vehicle.
  • Changes and modifications to the specifically described embodiments may be carried out without departing from the principles of the present invention, which is intended to be limited only by the scope of the appended claims as interpreted according to the principles of patent law.

Claims (26)

1. A vision system for a vehicle, said vision system comprising:
an imaging sensor disposed at the vehicle and having an exterior field of view, said imaging sensor capturing image data;
a control disposed at the vehicle;
a single core coaxial cable connecting said imaging sensor and said control; and
wherein said single core coaxial cable commonly carries (i) image data from said imaging sensor, (ii) power to said imaging sensor and (iii) communication data.
2. The vision system of claim 1, wherein said single core coaxial cable comprises a fluorinated ethylene propylene (FEP) perfluoroethylene-propylene plastic dielectric medium.
3. The vision system of claim 2, wherein said single core coaxial cable comprises (i) an inner core comprising copper, (ii) said dielectric medium, (iii) a foil screen, (iv) an outer conductor comprising copper and (v) an outer sheath.
4. The vision system of claim 1, wherein said single core coaxial cable comprises (i) an inner core comprising copper, (ii) a dielectric medium, (iii) a foil screen, (iv) an outer conductor comprising copper and (v) an outer sheath.
5. The vision system of claim 1, wherein said single core coaxial cable comprises (i) an inner core comprising copper, (ii) a dielectric medium, (iii) a foil screen, (iv) an outer conductor comprising copper, (v) a separating layer and (vi) an outer sheath.
6. The vision system of claim 1, wherein communication via said single core coaxial cable is Low Voltage Differential Signaling (LVDS), and wherein said LVDS interfaces with circuits with a first differential signal node comprising a core of said single core coaxial cable and a second differential signal node comprising a shield of said single core coaxial cable.
7-8. (canceled)
9. The vision system of claim 1, wherein said power carried to said imaging sensor is from a DC power supply.
10. (canceled)
11. The vision system of claim 1, wherein said vision system utilizes at least one of (i) an ETHERNET communication protocol, (ii) a Gigabit Multimedia Serial Link (GMSL) protocol and (iii) a FPD link III protocol.
12-13. (canceled)
14. The vision system of claim 1, wherein, when initially powering up the vision system, a transceiver of said imaging sensor is tuned to an initial communication mode, which is suitable for communication with at least one of said control, a communication interface of said vision system and a display device of said vision system, and wherein a communication protocol is transmitted during said initial communication mode.
15. (canceled)
16. The vision system of claim 14, comprising a plurality of imaging sensors disposed at the vehicle and having respective exterior fields of view, wherein said imaging sensors are operable to transmit calibration data to said control, and wherein said imaging sensors automatically transmit calibration data when said imaging sensors are triggered to transmit said calibration data, and wherein said vision system, responsive to receipt of said calibration data by said control, is operable to identify said imaging sensors and associated calibration data.
17. The vision system of claim 16, wherein at least one of (i) said imaging sensors automatically transmit calibration data responsive to an initial activation of said imaging sensor, (ii) said imaging sensors automatically transmit calibration data responsive to detection of a particular pattern in the respective field of view of said imaging sensors and (iii) and imaging sensors automatically transmit calibration data during at least one vertical blanking interval.
18-19. (canceled)
20. The vision system of claim 16, wherein said imaging sensors automatically transmit calibration data during at least one vertical blanking interval, and wherein said calibration data are transmitted in fractions over multiple vertical blanking intervals, and wherein said calibration data are repeatedly transmitted over at least one multiple vertical blanking interval.
21. (canceled)
22. The vision system of claim 1, comprising multiple imaging sensors having respective exterior fields of view, wherein a respective single core coaxial cable connects respective imaging sensors and said control.
23. The vision system of claim 1, further comprising a display device operable to display images captured by said imaging sensor for viewing by a driver of the vehicle.
24. A vision system for a vehicle, said vision system comprising:
a plurality of imaging sensors disposed at the vehicle and having respective exterior fields of view, each of said imaging sensors capturing respective image data;
a control disposed at the vehicle;
a single core coaxial cable connecting respective ones of said imaging sensors and said control; and
wherein each of said single core coaxial cables commonly carries (i) image data from said respective imaging sensor, (ii) power to said respective imaging sensor and (iii) communication data between said control and said respective imaging sensor.
25. The vision system of claim 24, wherein each of said single core coaxial cables comprises (i) an inner core comprising copper, (ii) a dielectric medium, (iii) a foil screen, (iv) an outer conductor comprising copper and (v) an outer sheath.
26. The vision system of claim 25, wherein said dielectric medium comprises a fluorinated ethylene propylene (FEP) perfluoroethylene-propylene plastic dielectric medium.
27. The vision system of claim 1, further comprising a display device operable to display images derived from image data captured by said imaging sensors for viewing by a driver of the vehicle.
28. A vision system for a vehicle, said vision system comprising:
an imaging sensor disposed at the vehicle and having an exterior field of view, said imaging sensor capturing image data;
a control disposed at the vehicle;
a single core coaxial cable connecting said imaging sensor and said control;
wherein said single core coaxial cable comprises (i) an inner core comprising copper, (ii) a dielectric medium, (iii) a foil screen, (iv) an outer conductor comprising copper and (v) an outer sheath;
wherein said single core coaxial cable commonly carries (i) image data from said imaging sensor, (ii) power to said imaging sensor and (iii) communication data; and
wherein said vision system utilizes at least one of (i) an ETHERNET communication protocol, (ii) a Gigabit Multimedia Serial Link (GMSL) protocol and (iii) a FPD-Link III protocol.
29. The vision system of claim 28, wherein said single core coaxial cable comprises a fluorinated ethylene propylene (FEP) perfluoroethylene-propylene plastic dielectric medium.
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