US20150363984A1 - Device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle - Google Patents

Device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle Download PDF

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Publication number
US20150363984A1
US20150363984A1 US14/835,665 US201514835665A US2015363984A1 US 20150363984 A1 US20150363984 A1 US 20150363984A1 US 201514835665 A US201514835665 A US 201514835665A US 2015363984 A1 US2015363984 A1 US 2015363984A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
device
vehicle
driving
route
configured
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Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
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US14/835,665
Inventor
Nilo Garcia Manchado
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CRAMBO SA
GARCIA MANCHADO Nilo
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CRAMBO SA
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Filing date
Publication date
Priority to ESP200800896 priority Critical
Priority to ES200800896A priority patent/ES2329863B1/en
Priority to ESP200802172 priority
Priority to ES200802172A priority patent/ES2332078B1/en
Priority to ES200803123A priority patent/ES2338201B8/en
Priority to ESP200803123 priority
Priority to ES200803429A priority patent/ES2340567B1/en
Priority to ESP200803429 priority
Priority to PCT/ES2009/070084 priority patent/WO2009121995A1/en
Priority to US93617211A priority
Application filed by CRAMBO SA filed Critical CRAMBO SA
Priority to US14/835,665 priority patent/US20150363984A1/en
Assigned to GARCIA MANCHADO, NILO, CRAMBO, S.A. reassignment GARCIA MANCHADO, NILO ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: GARCIA MANCHADO, NILO
Publication of US20150363984A1 publication Critical patent/US20150363984A1/en
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

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    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07CTIME OR ATTENDANCE REGISTERS; REGISTERING OR INDICATING THE WORKING OF MACHINES; GENERATING RANDOM NUMBERS; VOTING OR LOTTERY APPARATUS; ARRANGEMENTS, SYSTEMS OR APPARATUS FOR CHECKING NOT PROVIDED FOR ELSEWHERE
    • G07C5/00Registering or indicating the working of vehicles
    • G07C5/08Registering or indicating performance data other than driving, working, idle, or waiting time, with or without registering driving, working, idle or waiting time
    • G07C5/0841Registering performance data
    • 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
    • B60R16/023Electric 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 for transmission of signals between vehicle parts or subsystems
    • B60R16/0231Circuits relating to the driving or the functioning of the vehicle
    • B60R16/0236Circuits relating to the driving or the functioning of the vehicle for economical driving
    • GPHYSICS
    • G01MEASURING; TESTING
    • G01CMEASURING DISTANCES, LEVELS OR BEARINGS; SURVEYING; NAVIGATION; GYROSCOPIC INSTRUMENTS; PHOTOGRAMMETRY OR VIDEOGRAMMETRY
    • G01C21/00Navigation; Navigational instruments not provided for in preceding groups
    • G01C21/26Navigation; Navigational instruments not provided for in preceding groups specially adapted for navigation in a road network
    • G01C21/34Route searching; Route guidance
    • GPHYSICS
    • G01MEASURING; TESTING
    • G01SRADIO DIRECTION-FINDING; RADIO NAVIGATION; DETERMINING DISTANCE OR VELOCITY BY USE OF RADIO WAVES; LOCATING OR PRESENCE-DETECTING BY USE OF THE REFLECTION OR RERADIATION OF RADIO WAVES; ANALOGOUS ARRANGEMENTS USING OTHER WAVES
    • G01S19/00Satellite radio beacon positioning systems; Determining position, velocity or attitude using signals transmitted by such systems
    • G01S19/01Satellite radio beacon positioning systems transmitting time-stamped messages, e.g. GPS [Global Positioning System], GLONASS [Global Orbiting Navigation Satellite System] or GALILEO
    • G01S19/13Receivers
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07CTIME OR ATTENDANCE REGISTERS; REGISTERING OR INDICATING THE WORKING OF MACHINES; GENERATING RANDOM NUMBERS; VOTING OR LOTTERY APPARATUS; ARRANGEMENTS, SYSTEMS OR APPARATUS FOR CHECKING NOT PROVIDED FOR ELSEWHERE
    • G07C5/00Registering or indicating the working of vehicles
    • G07C5/004Indicating the operating range of the engine
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07CTIME OR ATTENDANCE REGISTERS; REGISTERING OR INDICATING THE WORKING OF MACHINES; GENERATING RANDOM NUMBERS; VOTING OR LOTTERY APPARATUS; ARRANGEMENTS, SYSTEMS OR APPARATUS FOR CHECKING NOT PROVIDED FOR ELSEWHERE
    • G07C5/00Registering or indicating the working of vehicles
    • G07C5/08Registering or indicating performance data other than driving, working, idle, or waiting time, with or without registering driving, working, idle or waiting time
    • G07C5/0816Indicating performance data, e.g. occurrence of a malfunction
    • G07C5/0825Indicating performance data, e.g. occurrence of a malfunction using optical means
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07CTIME OR ATTENDANCE REGISTERS; REGISTERING OR INDICATING THE WORKING OF MACHINES; GENERATING RANDOM NUMBERS; VOTING OR LOTTERY APPARATUS; ARRANGEMENTS, SYSTEMS OR APPARATUS FOR CHECKING NOT PROVIDED FOR ELSEWHERE
    • G07C5/00Registering or indicating the working of vehicles
    • G07C5/08Registering or indicating performance data other than driving, working, idle, or waiting time, with or without registering driving, working, idle or waiting time
    • G07C5/0841Registering performance data
    • G07C5/085Registering performance data using electronic data carriers
    • GPHYSICS
    • G08SIGNALLING
    • G08GTRAFFIC CONTROL SYSTEMS
    • G08G1/00Traffic control systems for road vehicles
    • G08G1/09Arrangements for giving variable traffic instructions
    • G08G1/0962Arrangements for giving variable traffic instructions having an indicator mounted inside the vehicle, e.g. giving voice messages
    • YGENERAL TAGGING OF NEW TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS; GENERAL TAGGING OF CROSS-SECTIONAL TECHNOLOGIES SPANNING OVER SEVERAL SECTIONS OF THE IPC; TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC CROSS-REFERENCE ART COLLECTIONS [XRACs] AND DIGESTS
    • Y02TECHNOLOGIES OR APPLICATIONS FOR MITIGATION OR ADAPTATION AGAINST CLIMATE CHANGE
    • Y02TCLIMATE CHANGE MITIGATION TECHNOLOGIES RELATED TO TRANSPORTATION
    • Y02T10/00Road transport of goods or passengers
    • Y02T10/80Technologies aiming to reduce greenhouse gasses emissions common to all road transportation technologies
    • Y02T10/84Data processing systems or methods, management, administration

Abstract

Device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle consisting of at least the following:
    • a first means of processing a signal; a second means of detecting the vehicle movement; a means for providing an HMI type of interactive display of information for the user, and a means configured for knowing the consumption characteristics of the vehicle and its technical characteristics as far as optimum theoretical behaviour;
    • where the means for processing are configured for calculating the optimum consumption according to the characteristics of the vehicle, establishing the driving parameters required for equating the actual consumption to the optimum consumption, displaying this information to the user in the means available for display.

Description

  • The purpose of this invention is a device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle, interactive with the user, which can be installed in a standard vehicle for the purpose of achieving an operation of the vehicle with optimum use of fuel from an ecological and economical point of view, which would enable to obtain a reduction in fuel consumption of between 15% and 60%, which would dearly contribute to reducing CO2 emissions. To accomplish this, this invention offers a series of recommendations in real time, based on the optimum calculation of fuel consumption, in a way that offers the user useful advice for achieving a reduction in said fuel consumption and/or optimizing the power-consumption ratio.
  • This invention fits within the technical sector of driving aid devices.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • Driving aid devices exist, which enable to monitor the driving in such a way that the driver himself can see how much fuel he is consuming and if the consumption is greater or lower than the expected. However, interactive systems do not exist to help the driver operate in a more ecological and economical manner; and secondly, solve the following technical problems derived from the monitoring of the driving.
      • (a) Figure out the degree of driving risk as compared to a set of safe driving standards for each type of road that would enable the driver to anticipate that a manoeuvre is dangerous and therefore, the possibility of engaging in serious risk if this manoeuvre is carried out; for example, passing in an unauthorized zone, excessive speed or other cases of interest.
      • (b) Control the expenditures derived from fuel consumption and others; in a way that such expenditures can be efficiently controlled.
      • (c) Control the anticipation distance with other vehicles, which is defined as the distance a vehicle must maintain with respect to other vehicles in order to take as much advantage as possible of a vehicle's inertia, as well as thanks to global positioning systems such as GPS, Galileo®, Glonass® or similar and their combination of maps, inform the user, without a connection to the vehicle, of engaging in excessive acceleration for an ecological operation of the vehicle and this way be able to minimize the fuel consumption.
  • European patent with publication number EP1811411 describes a method and a system for monitoring the driving style. In particular, it describes how to train the driver and analyze the driving in such a way as to improve the safety and economic efficiency when operating a vehicle. To accomplish this, a driving profile is generated in the database based on the data acquired from the vehicle (it is not a device that has the optimum conditions of the car stored in its database; instead, it requires reading the data provided from the engine control unit) and the vehicle's route. Additionally, this profile generates an external server, which is accessible to the user “afterwards”, and the driver is then responsible for changing his habits without any type of interaction with the system; he is a passive receiver of this information, which is not provided in real time. Therefore, and in accordance with this document, it is advisable that the following technical problems be resolved: (i) total independence of the vehicle where to install the device; and (ii) a greater interaction with the user, emitting instant recommendations regarding driving in a safe manner.
  • The closest technical background of this invention is document EP1900588 that describes a fuel efficient system based on optimum instant consumption as compared to the actual instant consumption. However, even though it considers not only the conditions of the vehicle but also the external road conditions and the precise position of the vehicle, this document requires a connection with the vehicle in order to calculate the instant conditions of the vehicle at that moment, indicating in comparison with the optimum conditions if the driving is efficient or not; but with this document, it is impossible, for example, for the user to take advantage of the same electronic device for its use in another vehicle; in other words, it would not be possible to use the same device by the same user for his personal vehicle and his working vehicle.
  • Document U.S. Pat. No. 6,092,021 describes a driving assistance system for efficient fuel usage but just like the aforementioned document, for use in a specific vehicle by reading the data from the engines electronic system.
  • DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • The invention attempts to fulfil the requirement for an interactive system for efficient driving that is based on economical as well as ecological aspects. To accomplish this, the device objective of this invention, implements means for monitoring the driving, means for processing this information and means for displaying the results such as HMI (Human Machine Interface); in other words, interfaces configured so the user can interact with the device.
  • There are behind the wheel behaviours that are known to be more economical and ecological than others. For example, changing gears at proper speeds can save gas; another example is starting the engine without pressing down on the gas pedal. However, and as a general rule, drivers do not remember these types of recommendations when driving and, additionally, they accumulate driving habits that are not very efficient. For this reason, the device described in this invention receives data relative to the way the user is driving the vehicle, which are then compared with the data that is defined as optimum in the device itself and instantaneously shows these results to the user. In a parallel way and as an option, the device offers recommendations to the driver for reducing consumption, prior to or during the driving. With the help of a global positioning system it is possible to know the vehicles speed and the device offers the results to the user. In a parallel way and as an option, the device offers recommendations to the driver for reducing consumption, prior to or during the driving. With the help of global positioning system data, the vehicles speed is also known and the device offers recommendations regarding when to change gears in a way that will result in optimizing fuel consumption.
  • The device is also capable of considering the different types of vehicles through the incorporation of data and/or technical specifications of vehicles that enable to optimize driving in terms of consumption and efficiency, offering driving advice in accordance with the type of vehicle that is being used.
  • For this reason, the device processes data such as road inclination or the weather conditions among others, and offers recommendations after these variables have been taken into account. It can also receive data from digital maps and with the help of the positioning system, it offers suggestions for driving more efficiently, since thanks to the maps, it is possible to know the average inclination of a determined route and thus offer specific driving suggestions to the user for this specific route.
  • Some of these recommendations may have to do with the use of accessories like air conditioning for instance, which may determine a more efficient usage in terms of fuel consumption with the help of for example, a thermometer.
  • At the same time, the invention may encompass different means for displaying the information to the driver; one of these may offer for example, the quantity of CO2 and/or the total monetary cost that the vehicle is producing, as compared with a standard in accordance with the variables associated with the drive, the surroundings, the amount of traffic and the vehicle itself. Also, with the help of digital maps and the vehicle specifications, the system can offer specific consumption predictions in terms of CO2 as well as in terms of the time and the cost of taking the proposed route, taking into consideration the different alternatives, offering the most optimum one according to the particular situation.
  • The device also enables to send diagnostic data regarding the driving, more or less, economical or ecological that includes the different incidents that may have occurred to a data processing system that is outside the vehicle, and it may do this in real time as well as after the drive.
  • Similarly and as an option, the device has access to the engine RPMs the vehicle is experiencing at that moment, combining the acoustic information provided by the engine for a determined number of turns, with the ideal number of revolutions the device has stored.
  • This invention is not only useful as a means for driving more efficiently, but is also valid for teaching how to drive in a more economical fashion, so the user can correct driving habits in real time thus saving on fuel.
  • A purpose of this invention is to combine the signalling of a route using highways and urban road maps, the traffic rules at those locations and the aforementioned vehicle driving data, in such a way that not only the economical repercussions of driving are evaluated but also the legal repercussions and the personal safety hazards of such driving. The processing means combines all the provided information in order to offer the driver relevant information regarding his safety. Through several types of relative recommendations like for example, the time of day the driving is taking place and the location from where the vehicle begins to move may offer recommendations regarding the most common risks associated to these times and uses. Also, and as and option, it is possible to record the risky events in a storage device and send these when deemed appropriate. This is useful when for example, a user repeatedly drives in a risky manner, the device can make this situation known to whom it deems appropriate and if necessary, may proceed to immobilizing the vehicle and/or reduce its power.
  • In the same way, the device is capable of warning against possible hazardous sections of the route and the reasons for these hazardous sections; thus offering information regarding the possible risks associated to a specific area. The device can offer information relative to stopping areas for example, a safety belt, and the reasons for it.
  • In other words, in general, the device offers safety recommendations that may be generic as well as specific depending on the operation of the vehicle and/or the biorhythms of the driver; in other words, taking into account the time of day the driving is taking place as well as the current weather conditions.
  • The described device enables to provide the user with the safety distance with respect to other vehicles in metres or in equivalent units because the device calculates the safety distance required by the vehicle in accordance with the type of vehicle and the load, displaying it for the user; for example, on a car navigator screen, simulating if required, the distance in a three-dimensional display or over the image captured by a camera in real time of the drivers view, because when the route information and maps are known, the safety distance can be simulated over a 3D map.
  • In general, the device as an option is capable of reminding the user of routines that are important regarding safety and driving, which otherwise, are difficult to memorize by the user. An example of these recommendations is “turn on the lights so that you can be clearly seen”, coinciding with the sunset and sunrise or when it is raining. In general, these are recommendations designed for improving the comfort and safety of the driver, in relation even with the biorhythms. In this last case, the device sets adequate times for driving and plans resting periods in accordance with the biorhythms, traffic or weather conditions; when the weather forecast is known, the device proposes actions such as for example, not to drive through a route due to icing, low temperatures or difficulties of any other type, even recommending alternate modes of transportation if the conditions are severe enough for driving.
  • Based on this idea, the device suggests safe places to stop for the occupants of the vehicle, which proves to be especially useful in places that are unknown to the drive. Therefore, the device, in a secondary way, warns the driver of possible risks, providing specific help as well as generic help regarding the management, training and knowledge of the driving risks associated with a vehicle. Likewise, it is useful as an interactive reminder of the legal driving rules, so it may offer added information, not only of all the signs that may be present on the road but also of the rules that may even be incorporated onto the navigator map itself.
  • Another secondary and optional aspect of this invention solves the requirement to combine cost behaviour data of the vehicle itself (such as the cost of fuel) as well as the economic costs generated by the vehicle user, displaying the data of a specific route regarding actual cost as well as predicted cost, to provide the user with the capability of deciding in a efficient manner if the trip in the vehicle is an adequate option or if it is necessary to opt for a more economical mode of transportation in real terms.
  • For this, the vehicle additionally includes at least the following: (i) a means for storing the data relative to the locations of expenditures related with the GPS maps as well as the data relative to the vehicle and its consumption; (ii) a means for storing the data relative to fixed costs; and (iii) a third means for recognizing a cost that also includes at least one of the following elements:
      • (a) a form that appears in the means for interaction with the user, configured for entering the cost data, and appears in these means of interaction with the user in an automatic way when the global positioning system detects a cost location that was previously stored in the data storage device;
      • (b) a means for scanning the expenditure receipt and its optical identification; and
      • (c) a combination of the above;
      • Where said means are configured so the costs remain stored in a second database that is accessible to the user for viewing and control as well as for the generation of different types of balances; and where additionally, the means for processing are configured for calculating the approximate cost of a determined trip, which combines the data relative to the global consumption of the vehicle stored in the means provided for this effect, the distance traveled and the price of the fuel.
  • Therefore, thanks to this, it is possible for the device to provide an estimate of the possible costs, analysis of these costs and methods for entering this data in an efficient manner, where one of the advantages that such a cost management system may have consists in being able to periodically control the costs incurred and associate them to specific activities.
  • As an option, the device shows the user the anticipation distance, which as opposed to the safety distance, shows the distance the vehicle must maintain with respect to other vehicles in order to take as much advantage as possible of the vehicle's Inertia. To accomplish this, and as a minimum, we must know the type of vehicle and its behaviour regarding deceleration (obtained from the optimum behaviour of the car) and the space required for this, the vehicles speed (obtained for example, from GPS) and display this information for the driver after it has been calculated.
  • The device for displaying this anticipation distance in a more precise way incorporates many detectors of the relative position of both vehicles and offers the user a target position in order to take advantage of the inertia. Additionally, it may share this information with an automatic transmission, changing gears in accordance with the distance and the behaviour of the vehicle that is located in front.
  • We must not confuse the anticipation distance with the safety distance. The latter is based on the distance required by a vehicle for stopping by using all of its available means like for example the brakes and the road conditions, while the anticipation distance is a different distance that takes into account the deceleration of the vehicle only or at least fundamentally with the engine brake since during this process the fuel consumption is zero, and to reach this distance the vehicle's speed is used, the braking action using the engine brake or by lifting the foot off the gas pedal, the gear it is in, if it has an automatic transmission, and the weight of the vehicle for defining an inertia.
  • In a parallel way and as an option, it is possible to include the road data via the maps, inclination, etc., giving the magnitude a direct relation with the speed at all times, and unique to each vehicle and situation. Additionally, we must take into account that the car is moving, which makes it necessary to take this fact into account when performing the calculation, understanding that the preceding vehicle is travelling at a similar speed as our own vehicle.
  • Regarding excessive acceleration, this is calculated using the average vehicle time and taking into account the radius of each of the gears as well as the most efficient speed. Subsequently, it is checked that the instant speed is within the efficient acceleration threshold. When the device detects in a time “t” that the vehicle has abruptly accelerated, this information is provided to the driver by means of a graphic and/or aural warning.
  • Thanks to the device described herein, a monitoring of the driving device is achieved that is completely interactive with the vehicle user in real time and independent, since it is never required to be connected with the centre that governs automotive vehicles.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES
  • Following is a brief description of a series of drawings that help to better understand this invention and are precisely related to the embodiment of this invention, providing an illustrated example that is not intended to limit this invention.
  • FIG. 1 shows a view of the ECONAV type device in operation.
  • FIG. 2 shows a view of the device operating in navigation mode.
  • FIG. 3 shows a view of the device in the configuration of the different modes of operation.
  • FIG. 4 shows a view of the device operating in ECOMAP mode.
  • PREFERRED EMBODIMENT OF THE INVENTION
  • The device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle essentially consists of at least:
      • a first means of processing a signal; a second means of detecting the vehicle movement; a means for providing an HMI type of interactive display of information for the user; and a means configured for knowing the consumption characteristics of the vehicle and its technical characteristics as far as optimum theoretical behaviour; where
      • the means for processing are configured for calculating the optimum consumption according to the characteristics of the vehicle, establishing the driving parameters required for equating the actual consumption to the optimum consumption, displaying this information to the user in the means available for display.
  • Therefore, and in a preferred embodiment of this invention, before using the device requires a previous configuration from the user; in such a way so he can chose between different options to be able to use the vehicle in an efficient manner, which has been selected between more than 50 makes and 6000 models, stored and integrated in the means for accessing vehicle characteristics. In any case, if the vehicle is not predefined in these means, it is also possible to enter it using the “defined by the user” option, which may be used for configuring the parameters that are suitable to the characteristics of your vehicle in a customized manner by selecting between the following parameters:
      • Type of transmission: sequential, manual or automatic.
      • Engine: from 1000 cc to more than 4000 cc.
      • Number of gears: from four up to eight gears.
      • Type of fuels. Gasoline or diesel.
      • Type of vehicle: utility, minivan, off-road.
  • Once the vehicle to be used has been chosen, the device is ready to be used in the mode we will define as ECONAV, where the device is working without showing the route listed in the global positioning system (GPS), as shown in FIG. 1. We will differentiate this mode of operation from the ECOMAP mode (FIG. 4), which shows the route with the basic data of information regarding economical driving, or of the navigation mode (FIG. 2) where a route is defined and it navigates towards it showing the basic information data regarding economical driving.
  • The ECONAV mode is defined by the user inside a menu (FIG. 3), where we can access the following:
      • (a) a first access (301) to the navigation mode, where, by pressing this option, we can use the device in navigation mode and plan the route;
      • (b) a second access (302) for selecting the level of consumption we wish to achieve for ecological driving; this way, we can select between the basic savings mode, average savings mode and maximum savings mode;
      • (c) a third access (303) of occupancy, where the vehicle load is defined between two levels of occupancy, maximum and minimum;
      • (d) a fourth access (304) of selecting the vehicle, where we can define over which vehicle we wish to apply the device; this access corresponds with the indications mentioned above, specifically, when the vehicle is within the means of the device itself, it simply requires selecting the type of fuel and engine from a list.
      • (e) a fifth access (305) of audio selection, capable of enabling and disabling the audio level of the device; and
      • (f) a sixth access (306) of selection of preferences, where, among other things, you can select the information to be displayed for the user during driving for improving the driving efficiency, while being able to select the periodicity of when these suggestions are displayed.
  • As has been previously explained, in the normal operation, the device includes three basic modes of operation; ECONAV mode (FIG. 1), ECOMAP mode (FIG. 4) and NAVIGATION mode (FIG. 2).
  • The ECONAV mode is used independently of the route, assuming that the user knows how to reach the destination and the objective is only to save fuel and reduce the CO2 emissions, solely by selecting the vehicle as indicated above to obtain the appropriate indications for an efficient operation of the vehicle. Therefore, and in accordance with FIG. 1, the device shows the following information for the user:
      • (i) vehicle speed (101) in real time and maximum speed allowed on the road (102) that is being used, configured to indicate the level of risk associated with driving in another preferred embodiment of this invention;
      • (ii) recommended gear (103), where this indicator recommends the gear the user must be in real time depending on the vehicle's speed and the type of vehicle that has been selected. This is possibly the most important indicator, because thanks to it, the user is capable of adapting his driving to the optimum driving defined in the device for this specific vehicle. More specifically, for calculating the changing of gears, an XML type database file of the vehicles is used along with the technical specifications of the vehicles, which include the following data: Weights, number of cylinders, engine position, cubic centimetres, diameter stroke, valves per cylinder, type of engine fuel supply, HP/RPM, Torque (Nm/RPM, type of traction, gearbox, miles per gallon (urban, off road and mixed), CO2 emissions, suspension and brakes. In other words, in this data we have the performance at 1000 rpm for each one of the gears, taking into account that the optimum gear change for a gasoline vehicle occurs at 2000 rpm and for a diesel at 1500 rpm, we perform the corresponding calculation to see the speed at which the gear changes must be carried out in that specific vehicle, which are based on the following generic function:

  • Speed=speed*(1+((5*(occupancy−1))/100+((5*(3−savings))/100));
      • (iv) radar warning (104) that is activated when driving on a road with a defined speed limit and we exceed it. Additionally, in this case we take into account the list of radars provided by authorities (in the case of navigating in Spain, the list is provided by the General Directorate for Traffic [DGT]);
      • (v) warning due to excess acceleration/deceleration (105) where this indicator appears when an excessive acceleration/deceleration is performed, taking into account that this excessive acceleration/deceleration is calculated based on the five last speeds and comparing them to the allowed acceleration/deceleration range for that vehicle, estimating if any excessive acceleration has occurred. These ranges are predefined in an accelerations table and another table for deceleration in the device itself. Only the excessive acceleration/deceleration is displayed if the previously estimated excessive acceleration and/or deceleration is detected tree times in a row.
      • (vi) anticipation distance (106) which is the indicator of the anticipation distance that must be maintained with the preceding vehicle; it may be selected between dry road surface and wet road surface (if it is not connected with any weather warning service) and the indication will be provided in seconds or metres. It is calculated by taking into account that the speed of the preceding vehicle is the same as the own vehicle and considers deceleration without stepping on the brake. This distance will be enough to stop in case the front vehicle stops abruptly and if not so, will take advantage of the vehicle's inertia, while also taking into account the variations in inertia when driving in sloped roads:

  • Distance=((radius_turn_gear(speed/10))2−(inertia_vehicle−engine resistance);
      • (vii) consumption efficiency indicators (107), which we will call “ecolights”, where we can see the level of efficiency in fuel consumption in real time, which includes four levels that will change colours:
      • Green: optimum level of consumption;
      • Yellow: medium level of consumption;
      • Red: high level of consumption;
      • Grey: lower than optimum level of consumption.
  • These levels are defined by the relation between the road speed limit and the vehicle's speed, in the case it exists, (spd=speed, speed in km/h):
  • Road limit Grey Green Yellow Red
    Without limit Spd < 105 Spd < 125 Spd > 125
    Spd < 90 Spd < 70% limit Spd < 95% limit Spd < 110% limit Spd > 110% limit
    Spd < 120 Spd < 65% limit Spd < 95% limit Spd < 110% limit Spd > 110% limit
    Spd > 120 Spd < 60% limit Spd < 82% limit Spd < 115% limit Spd > 115% limit
      • (viii) the occupancy level (108), consumption level (109), GPS signal (110), battery level (111), ECONAV menu (113) (shown in FIG. 3) and change to ECOMAP mode of operation are other possible accesses in this mode of operation.
  • The ECOMAP mode of operation is shown in FIG. 4 and shows a current view of the global positioning system map (401), the current time (402), the road indicator (name) (403), the current speed (404), the GPS signal (405), the maximum speed limit of the road (406), the recommended gear (407), the “ecolights” or lights that indicate the consumption efficiency (408), the excessive acceleration/deceleration warning (409), the anticipation distance (410), the switching (411) to ECONAV mode shown in FIG. 1 or the access to the menu (412) represented in FIG. 3. Thanks to this mode of operation, it is possible to view the vehicle's location on the map, while the indicated data summary appears on the side of the screen, which are the recommendations provided by the device for obtaining an optimum use of fuel, which essentially correspond with the mentioned calculations for the ECONAV operation of FIG. 1. In this mode of operation, and for safety reasons, it is not possible to enter a route in the GPS.
  • The navigation mode of operation is shown in FIG. 2, which shows all the typical functionalities of a GPS navigator and where a summary of the recommendations for reducing the fuel consumption are displayed except the changing of gears, not shown for safety reasons (to prevent producing unnecessary distractions for the driver). Therefore, the navigation mode of operation displays a view of the map (201) with a mode of operation indicator (202), the ecolights or efficiency indicators (203), the acceleration/deceleration warning (204), the anticipation distance (205), access to the ECONAV menu (206), switching to ECONAV view (207) shown in FIG. 1, the GPS signal (208), the distance to destination (209), the vehicle's current speed (210), the current time (211), the distance to the destination (212), the direction to follow (213), the lane indicator (214) indicator that shows what lane you should be driving in, the percentage of the route (215) and the maximum speed limit of the road (216). All the calculations correspond with those already mentioned.
  • We must mention here that in the navigation itself, you can define points of interest (radars, hazardous sections, or any other item) where the direction plays an important role. The problem generally consists in knowing the direction the vehicle is driving in without entering a specific route in the device. To accomplish this, information regarding a point of interest is displayed; not when it is detected but when a direct relation is detected between the distance of the signal to be displayed and the vehicle's speed; in other words, if there is a radar signal at 1000 metres and the speed of the object is 10 metres per second, a new check is performed and we observe that 10 seconds later; that is, 100 metres later, we find ourselves at a range of 900 metres from the signal, and therefore we can conclude that the vehicle is nearing the object and therefore, it is located on its path; if by the contrary, the distance increases, we assume it is getting farther away.
  • In a second embodiment, this device includes a database with the current legal driving regulation so that the processing means can calculate, according to the information provided by the vehicle and in accordance with the type of driving, a level of risk, a recommendation to prevent such risk and a warning of the legal consequences associated to that risk. Additionally, it includes a communications emitter-receiver element that is configured for:
      • (a) sending the generated risky situations to another nearby device and/or an external server;
      • (b) receive data from other devices and/or an external server in accordance with the location of the device, where said data includes the weather data and the forecast as well as the data relative to traffic;
      • where the processing means takes this data into account for generating recommendations regarding the risks associated with driving.
  • In a third embodiment, the processing means are configured for calculating the estimated safety distance with respect to other devices, displaying this safety distance on the display screen.
  • In a fourth embodiment, the processing means are configured for calculating the economic expenditure associated to the defined route; at the beginning, as estimated expenditure, and at the end of the route, as accumulated expenditure of the joumey in accordance with the route and the theoretical optimum consumption of this route for a specific vehicle and, instantaneously, as accumulated in real time. Additionally, it includes means for recognizing an external expenditure that is not due to the direct consumption by the vehicle, in such a way that the device has the data relative to fixed costs stored along with one of the following elements:
      • (a) a form that appears in the means for interaction with the user, configured for entering the cost data, and appears in these means of interaction with the user in an automatic way when the global positioning system detects a cost location that was previously stored in the data storage device;
      • (b) a means for scanning the expenditure receipt and its optical identification; and
      • (c) a combination of the above.
  • In a fifth embodiment, it is possible to incorporate a plurality of detectors for detecting the relative location of both vehicles and offer the user an objective location in order to take advantage of inertia, and this information is able to be shared with the automatic transmission and therefore, change gears according to the distance and behaviour of the vehicle that is located nearby.
  • Finally, in a sixth preferred embodiment, the device is able to display external information like for example, electronic mails or SMS messages in a secure manner; in other words, for example, when the vehicle has stopped, storing these incoming messages in a buffer when it is not possible to display them, displaying them afterwards when safe conditions are met.
  • In all the modes of operation and performances, the information is provided by means of a code of colours and/or large numbers in a way that the user without directly looking, can clearly interpret the recommendations provided by the device, in a way that guarantees the least number of distractions for the driver as possible.
  • The means of detection of vehicle movement include an accelerometer.
  • The information regarding a point of interest, not when it is detected but when a direct relation is detected between the distance to the signal to be displayed and the vehicle's speed.
  • The device is configured for displaying external information of the type that requires the attention and/or reading on the part of the user, being displayed exclusively for the user when the processing means determine they are in a non-driving position, storing these incoming messages in a buffer whenever it is not possible to safely display them. The information is provided by means of a code of colours and/or large numbers in a way that the user without directly looking, can clearly interpret the recommendations provided by the device.
  • The device is one selected between:
      • mobile phone;
      • PDA;
      • GPS device;
      • electronic devices integrated in the vehicle;
      • a combination of the above.
  • The device described in this preferred and non-exclusive embodiment is implemented in a Hardware with an internal 2 GB-64 MB SDRAM flash type memory, it has an SD/MMC data input and capable of supporting SDHC, a standard GPS receiver, a “dual core” 400 Mhz integrated processor, a touch screen, an audio output, rechargeable battery and output/input data USB 2.0 type.

Claims (41)

1-15. (canceled)
16. A device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle arranged to the evaluation of the risks comprising:
a global positioning system including road signs;
a first database wherein the technical characteristics of the vehicle are listed;
a display;
a second database containing the legal rules of driving; and
wherein the device comprises a processor arranged to calculate a level of risk as a function of:
the location and/or speed of the vehicle received from the global positioning system;
the technical specification of a vehicle selected from the first database;
the legal driving regulation from the second database.
17. The device of claim 16 wherein the first database includes weights, number of cylinders, engine position, cubic centimeters, diameter stroke, valves per cylinder, type of engine fuel supply, HP/RPM, Torque (Nm)/RPM, type of traction, gearbox, miles per gallon in urban, off road and mixed driving, CO2 emissions, suspensions and brakes.
18. The device of claim 16 wherein the display comprises a HMI interface including a selector of a vehicle from the database in which the device is used.
19. The device of claim 16 wherein the processor is arranged to show the level of risk in the display including: a recommendation to prevent that risk; and a warning of the legal consequences associated to that risk; said warning being stored in the second database.
20. The device of claim 16 wherein the global positioning system is GPS type; said global positioning system further configured to lay out a route that are also configured to provide information of a route layout, the type of road, the position of the vehicle in the route and the orography of that route.
21. The device of claim 16 which includes a communications emitter-receiver element that is configured for:
(a) sending generated risky situations to another nearby device and/or an external server with the identification of the user;
(b) receive data from other devices and/or an external server in accordance with the location of the device, wherein said data includes the weather data and the forecast as well as the data relative to traffic; and
wherein the processor is further configured to generate a recommendation regarding the risk associated with driving according with the received data.
22. The device of claim 16 wherein said device is connected with a plurality of detectors for detecting the relative location of two vehicles and provides the user with an objective location in order to take advantage of inertia; and wherein said data is able to be shared with a vehicle automatic transmission in order to change the vehicle gear according to the distance and behavior of the vehicle that is located nearby.
23. The device of claim 16 comprising an accelerometer.
24. The device of claim 16 wherein the processor is further configured to determine a non-driving position; and
if it is established a non-driving position, the device is configured to display external information of the type that requires the attention and/or reading on the part of the user, and
if it is not established a non-driving position, the device is configured to store incoming messages in a buffer.
25. The device of claim 16 wherein the information is provided by means of a code of colours and/or large numbers in a way that the user without directly looking, can clearly interpret the recommendations provided by the device.
26. The device of claim 16 wherein the processing means are configured for calculating the estimated safety distance with respect to other devices, displaying this safety distance in the display.
27. A device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle arranged to the evaluation of the risks comprising:
a global positioning system including road signs;
a first database wherein the technical characteristics of the vehicle are listed;
a display;
a second database containing the legal rules of driving; and
wherein the device comprises a processor arranged to calculate a level of risk as a function of an excessive acceleration or deceleration of a vehicle.
28. The device of claim 27 wherein the first database includes weights, number of cylinders, engine position, cubic centimeters, diameter stroke, valves per cylinder, type of engine fuel supply, HP/RPM, Torque (Nm)/RPM, type of traction, gearbox, miles per gallon in urban, off road and mixed driving, CO2 emissions, suspensions and brakes.
29. The device of claim 27 wherein the display comprises a HMI interface including a selector of a vehicle from the database in which the device is used.
30. The device of claim 27 wherein the processor is arranged to show the level of risk in the display including: a recommendation to prevent that risk; and a warning of the legal consequences associated to that risk; said warning being stored in the second database.
31. The device of claim 27 wherein the global positioning system is GPS type; said global positioning system further configured to lay out a route that are also configured to provide information of a route layout, the type of road, the position of the vehicle in the route and the orography of that route.
32. The device of claim 27 which includes a communications emitter-receiver element that is configured for:
(a) sending generated risky situations to another nearby device and/or an external server with the identification of the user;
(b) receive data from other devices and/or an external server in accordance with the location of the device, wherein said data includes the weather data and the forecast as well as the data relative to traffic; and
wherein the processor is further configured to generate a recommendation regarding the risk associated with driving according with the received data.
33. The device of claim 27 wherein the processor is further configured to:
calculate the average time in which a vehicle is in acceleration or deceleration taking into account the radius of each one of the vehicle's gears and an efficient speed;
check the speed at different moments of a route to calculate the acceleration;
establish if the vehicle has accelerated or decelerated abruptly; and
provide a graphic and/or aural warning when the vehicle has accelerated or decelerated abruptly.
34. The device of claim 27 wherein said device is connected with a plurality of detectors for detecting the relative location of two vehicles and provides the user with an objective location in order to take advantage of inertia; and wherein said data is able to be shared with a vehicle automatic transmission in order to change the vehicle gear according to the distance and behavior of the vehicle that is located nearby.
35. The device of claim 27 comprising an accelerometer.
36. The device of claim 27 wherein the processor is further configured to determine a non-driving position; and
if it is established a non-driving position, the device is configured to display external information of the type that requires the attention and/or reading on the part of the user; and
if it is not established a non-driving position, the device is configured to store incoming messages in a buffer.
37. The device of claim 27 wherein the information is provided by means of a code of colours and/or large numbers in a way that the user without directly looking, can clearly interpret the recommendations provided by the device.
38. The device of claim 27 wherein the processing means are configured for calculating the estimated safety distance with respect to other devices, displaying this safety distance in the display screen.
39. A device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle arranged to the evaluation of the risks comprising:
a global positioning system including road signs;
a first database wherein the technical characteristics of the vehicle are listed;
a display;
a second database containing the legal rules of driving; and
wherein the device comprises a processor arranged to calculate an anticipation distance as a function of the speed of the own vehicle; the variations in inertia of the own vehicle; and the engine resistance that represents the deceleration of the own vehicle without stepping on the brake extracted from the technical specification of a vehicle selected from the first database.
40. The device of claim 39 wherein the first database includes weights, number of cylinders, engine position, cubic centimeters, diameter stroke, valves per cylinder, type of engine fuel supply, HP/RPM, Torque (Nm)/RPM, type of traction, gearbox, miles per gallon in urban, off road and mixed driving, CO2 emissions, suspensions and brakes.
41. The device of claim 39 wherein the display comprises a HMI interface including a selector of a vehicle from the database in which the device is used.
42. The device of claim 39 wherein the processor is arranged to show the anticipation distance.
43. The device of claim 39 wherein the global positioning system is GPS type; said global positioning system further configured to lay out a route that are also configured to provide information of a route layout, the type of road, the position of the vehicle in the route and the orography of that route.
44. The device of claim 39 which includes a communications emitter-receiver element that is configured for
(a) sending data to another nearby device and/or an external server with the identification of the user;
(b) receive data from other devices and/or an external server in accordance with the location of the device, wherein said data includes the weather data and the forecast as well as the data relative to traffic; and
wherein the processor is further configured to generate a recommendation regarding the risk associated with driving according with the received data.
45. The device of claim 39 wherein said device is connected with a plurality of detectors for detecting the relative location of two vehicles and provides the user with an objective location in order to take advantage of inertia; and wherein said data is able to be shared with a vehicle automatic transmission in order to change the vehicle gear according to the distance and behavior of the vehicle that is located nearby.
46. The device of claim 39 comprising an accelerometer.
47. The device of claim 39 wherein the processor is further configured to determine a non-driving position; and
if it is established a non-driving position, the device is configured to display external information of the type that requires the attention and/or reading on the part of the user; and
if it is not established a non-driving position, the device is configured to store incoming messages in a buffer.
48. The device of claim 39 wherein the information is provided by means of a code of colours and/or large numbers in a way that the user without directly looking, can clearly interpret the recommendations provided by the device.
49. The device of claim 39 wherein the processing means are configured for calculating the estimated safety distance with respect to other devices, displaying this safety distance in the display.
50. A device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle comprising:
a global positioning system;
a first database wherein the technical characteristics of the vehicle are listed;
a display;
wherein the device comprises a processor arranged to calculate the economic expenditure associated with a route; said economic expenditure comprising an estimated expenditure at the beginning of the route and an accumulated expenditure of the route at the end of that route; and wherein the expenditure is calculated in accordance with the route, the theoretical optimum consumption for that route for a vehicle; and instantaneously as accumulated in real time.
51. The device of claim 50 further including: (a) a form that automatically appears in the display when the global positioning system detects a cost location that was previously stored in a data storage device; (b) a camera or scanner; and (c) a combination of the above.
52. The device of claim 50 wherein the first database includes weights, number of cylinders, engine position, cubic centimeters, diameter stroke, valves per cylinder, type of engine fuel supply, HP/RPM, Torque (Nm)/RPM, type of traction, gearbox, miles per gallon in urban, off road and mixed driving, CO2 emissions, suspensions and brakes.
53. The device of claim 50 wherein the display comprises a HMI interface including a selector of a vehicle from the database in which the device is used.
54. The device of claim 50 wherein the global positioning system is GPS type; said global positioning system further configured to lay out a route that are also configured to provide information of a route layout, the type of road, the position of the vehicle in the route and the orography of that route.
55. The device of claim 50 wherein includes a communications emitter-receiver element that is configured for
(a) sending data to another nearby device and/or an external server with the identification of the user;
(b) receive data from other devices and/or an external server in accordance with the location of the device.
US14/835,665 2008-04-01 2015-08-25 Device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle Abandoned US20150363984A1 (en)

Priority Applications (11)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
ESP200800896 2008-04-01
ES200800896A ES2329863B1 (en) 2008-04-01 2008-04-01 System monitoring and processing of driving a vehicle.
ESP200802172 2008-07-22
ES200802172A ES2332078B1 (en) 2008-07-22 2008-07-22 System analysis and monitoring of driving a vehicle.
ES200803123A ES2338201B8 (en) 2008-11-03 2008-11-03 Device driver assistance.
ESP200803123 2008-11-08
ES200803429A ES2340567B1 (en) 2008-12-02 2008-12-02 Device and method of managing expenditure and consumption of a vehicle.
ESP200803429 2008-12-02
PCT/ES2009/070084 WO2009121995A1 (en) 2008-04-01 2009-03-31 Device for monitoring vehicle driving
US93617211A true 2011-02-15 2011-02-15
US14/835,665 US20150363984A1 (en) 2008-04-01 2015-08-25 Device for monitoring the process of driving a vehicle

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US93617211A Continuation 2011-02-15 2011-02-15

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