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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Taking ownership of my Ascent on the 7th of December.

We drive a stretch of road in Eastern Washington that is extremely thick with fog. My question: Has anyone experienced any issues with eyesight going off, or misjudging things due to thick fog?

Thanks.
 

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Taking ownership of my Ascent on the 7th of December.

We drive a stretch of road in Eastern Washington that is extremely thick with fog. My question: Has anyone experienced any issues with eyesight going off, or misjudging things due to thick fog?

Thanks.
It's even already written in the owners manual that this can happen. Which simply means that when you're driving in thick fog, be aware of your surroundings and drive accordingly. No adaptive cruise, no lane keep, and you may need to turn collision avoidance off so that it doesn't accidentally trip due to the sudden loss of visibility.

Page 30 / 31 of the Eyesight Owners Manual:

The Pre-Collision Braking System may activate in the following situations.
Therefore concentrate on safe driving.
- When passing through an automatic gate (opening and shutting)
- When driving close to the vehicle in front
- When driving in a location where the grade of the road changes rapidly
- When visibility is poor due to sand, smoke or water vapor blowing in the wind, or when the front vision is obscured due to water splashes, snow, dirt or dust stir up generated by the vehicle in front or oncoming traffic
- When passing through clouds of steam or smoke, etc.
- When driving in adverse weather, such as heavy snow or snowstorms
- When the exhaust gas emitted by the vehicle in front is clearly visible in cold weather, etc.

It also tells you on Page 43 of the same manual to NOT use Adaptive Cruise Control under the same circumstances.

- When visibility is poor due to sand, smoke or water vapor blowing in the wind, or when the front vision is obscured due to water splashes, snow, dirt, water spray from road sprinklers or snow clearing sprinklers on the road, or dust stir up generated by the vehicle in front or oncoming traffic. Detection of the vehicle in front may be lost, or water or other substances may be incorrectly detected instead, making correct control impossible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So my understanding is this... When you need the eyesight system the most it doesn’t work. Fantastic. Somewhat turns this into a gimmick if it only works in perfect weather situations.
 

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It does not use a radar or some other exotic tech to watch the road ahead. It has a pair of cameras looking ahead and a computer gathering information and advising you on whats going on in front of the car. If it can't see, it would mean, you can't see. Time to get off the road.
 

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It can also be “blinded” by direct sun and excessive reflection off of wet roadways. I too had the thought that it stops working when you “need” it most. But the more correct response would be closer to, it adds additional help for you when it can.

No system yet is going to drive for you. There is a feeling that I fell for rather quickly on my wife’s Outback a couple of years ago and even more with my Ascent that the Eyesight system would just take care of it. I even felt at times that my Ascent could almost drive itself, in a manner. And when it gets blinded, you feel like you have been left vulnerable. In truth, you were supposed to be handling it all along, just like you always have. It shows me how quickly I can become dependent if I allow myself to.

In general, the Eyesight is a great help and convenience. And it has been arguably judged the best out there so far. I just need to maintain perspective, and be aware of the limits of technology.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Good thoughts everyone.

I think maybe in the next round of eyesight engineering they should put some radar tech in there to cut through fog. I know my 400$ radar detector can cut through just about anything as I have seen it work multiple times in bad weather. Don't think it's that much of a stretch thinking Subaru with it's big R&D safety budget could add some sort of radar tech to help in such situations.

That being said nothing is perfect and I will take the system for what it's worth. A help in time of need when conditions are perfect. :tango_face_wink:
 

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There's been two situations lately where eyesight has disabled itself while driving.

The first was Thanksgiving day driving back home from the in-laws place. They live in a rural setting and to get there is about a 16 mile long dusty dirt road that usually has pretty heavy traffic. At this time we weren't following anyone so the dust was minimal, but along the way eyesight disabled completely. I wasn't sure the reason exactly at the time, but the moment we hit the pavement eyesight re-enabled and all was well.

The second time was this past Saturday night and we were in town for a late dinner. During which a massive blizzard hit with high winds and terrible visibility. I can get home either through town or hitting an interstate real quick and chose that as the highway snow plow trucks are usually much better than the in town ones. However, it was pretty bad and very poor visibility with blowing snow. Eyesight again disabled itself and didn't turn back on until we were pulling into the garage.

In both situations I didn't feel the disabling of eyesight put me in a compromised situation. I don't view it as a driver replacement system so I'm fully aware of what's going on especially on a bendy dirt road and with blizzard conditions.
 

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Radar isn't magic...

Radar doesn't magically cut through fog, folks. Remember watching the weather channels? Those "Doppler Radar" systems work (or get confused) because clouds and fog reflect radar. Sure, you get a more solid bounce back from a car in the fog, but, as it is, radar already doesn't have enough detail to determine an object, and would make it very difficult to differentiate between a thick pocket of fog and another vehicle.

Add to that, radar cannot see line markings, often making such bounce backs irrelevant (at any point the road curves).

So, making a system that uses LIDAR (better than regular radar) to accomplish the needs of determining what it's "looking" at is possible, but, quite honestly, the amount of work in getting a complete, fully integrated LIDAR/dual stereoscopic camera system working is staggering - and no, LIDAR alone isn't better than the cameras - it's worse in many ways (it too cannot see lanes and line markings).

As for the system failing to work at the most important times, for the vast majority of drivers, fog is not commonplace during their total commute hours, and inattentiveness is. There's all sorts of traffic and accident stats recorded by NHTSA, and collisions in fog is near the bottom of the list. So, Eyesight is very effective at reducing accidents or reducing the severity of them at the times and in the conditions most drivers are likely to get into an accident.

ANOTHER important note is that cameras will not get confused by cars with other cameras, while, on the other hand, cars WILL start getting more and more confused as the proliferation of in car radar and lidar systems increases, and the noise/clutter makes it difficult for each car to determine which is a bounce back from its signal or which is a signal from another car.

And then there's the cost of LIDAR... :sad:

Regardless, neither LIDAR nor RADAR alone can make a complete system that's capable of lane assist or lane centering or any sort of reliable adaptive cruise control. For instance, how many of you have watched your vehicle determine which car in which lane it's following?

Individually, dual stereoscopic 3D cameras are the best single tech for a more diverse set of needs. Nothing else is able to have as detailed of a "picture" for the computer to analyze, nor able to see road markings, read road signs, etc.

Combined, it would be LIDAR and dual cams (and maybe sonar), but there's still the limitations of running numerous lidar systems right next to each other without confusing each other (which adds to the complexity and cost).

Some fun reading:
https://www.sensorsmag.com/components/lidar-vs-radar
http://www.archer-soft.com/en/blog/lidar-vs-radar-comparison-which-system-better-automotive
https://cleantechnica.com/2016/07/29/tesla-google-disagree-lidar-right/
https://www.rs-online.com/designspark/lidar-radar-digital-cameras-the-eyes-of-autonomous-vehicles
https://www.autopilotreview.com/lidar-vs-cameras-self-driving-cars/
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...e-confronted-bank-fog-looks-like-TSUNAMI.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clutter_(radar)
 

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Radar doesn't magically cut through fog, folks. Remember watching the weather channels? Those "Doppler Radar" systems work (or get confused) because clouds and fog reflect radar. Sure, you get a more solid bounce back from a car in the fog, but, as it is, radar already doesn't have enough detail to determine an object, and would make it very difficult to differentiate between a thick pocket of fog and another vehicle.

Add to that, radar cannot see line markings, often making such bounce backs irrelevant (at any point the road curves).

So, making a system that uses LIDAR (better than regular radar) to accomplish the needs is possible, but, quite honestly, the amount of work in getting a complete, fully integrated LIDAR/dual stereoscopic camera system working is staggering - and no, LIDAR alone isn't better than the cameras - it's worse in many ways (it too cannot see lanes and line markings).

As for the system failing to work at the most important times, for the vast majority of drivers, fog is not commonplace during their total commute hours, and inattentiveness is. There's all sorts of traffic and accident stats recorded by NHTSA, and collisions in fog is near the bottom of the list. So, Eyesight is very effective at reducing accidents or reducing the severity of them at the times and in the conditions most drivers are likely to get into an accident.

ANOTHER important note is that cameras will not get confused by cars with other cameras, while, on the other hand, cars WILL start getting more and more confused as the proliferation of in car radar and lidar systems increases, and the noise/clutter makes it difficult for each car to determine which is a bounce back from its signal or which is a signal from another car.

And then there's the cost of LIDAR... :sad:

Regardless, neither LIDAR nor RADAR alone can make a complete system that's capable of lane assist or lane centering or any sort of reliable adaptive cruise control. For instance, how many of you have watched your vehicle determine which car in which lane it's following?

Some fun reading:
https://www.sensorsmag.com/components/lidar-vs-radar
LIDAR vs RADAR Comparison. Which System is Better for Automotive? | Archer Software
https://cleantechnica.com/2016/07/29/tesla-google-disagree-lidar-right/
https://www.rs-online.com/designspark/lidar-radar-digital-cameras-the-eyes-of-autonomous-vehicles
https://www.autopilotreview.com/lidar-vs-cameras-self-driving-cars/
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...e-confronted-bank-fog-looks-like-TSUNAMI.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clutter_(radar)

Subaru says Eyesight and their other driver assist technologies can prevent 84% of crashes that occur. That's a pretty good number, but obviously not perfect. There are still times you have to think ahead and consider the limitations.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm going to have to disagree with you about Radar not working in Fog. I drive in in it every day and my real world experience says otherwise.

There is technology out there that helps cut through fog and looking at this one cherry picked article I found isn't extravagantly expensive.

Tech is advancing, it will eventually be here.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct...467f3849c58/&usg=AOvVaw3X9UhUp_6_dcSxc9VD1fgA
 

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Yep!

Subaru says Eyesight and their other driver assist technologies can prevent 84% of crashes that occur. That's a pretty good number, but obviously not perfect. There are still times you have to think ahead and consider the limitations.
Prevent or mitigate impact forces of 84% of crashes, which is utterly phenomenal. And, Subaru of Japan has the data to back up those claims.

AND, for the prevention/mitigation part, as noted elsewhere, they do a far better job than any other manufacturer (including Tesla) in virtually every aspect.

Subaru led the pack in 2013:
http://www.autonews.com/article/201...-iihs-ratings-of-automatic-braking-technology

Subaru still leads as of November 2018:
https://www.caranddriver.com/features/safety-features-automatic-braking-system-tested-explained
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Subaru says Eyesight and their other driver assist technologies can prevent 84% of crashes that occur. That's a pretty good number, but obviously not perfect. There are still times you have to think ahead and consider the limitations.
Pretty sure you guys are thinking that I believe the car should drive itself. Not the case.

I understand people need to take control behind the wheel and drive the car. I am not advocating for a self driving system with the eyesight system. I purchased my last car because it DID NOT have this type of tech so I could control the vehicle myself. To trust a system to keep you in a lane or break for you when an obstacle is detected kind of goes against my intuition as a driver in all ways. And it should everyone.

I don't want anyone or anything 'keeping me safe' that I can't trust. I don't want anything in my mind to tell me "it's ok" when it really is not ok..... and it has been proven that the eyesight system while good at specific things in PERFECT WEATHER conditions has limits as stated in the owners manual. Fog, Snow, blowing sand, vehicle emissions in front of you, someone lights a match and the smoke is too thick....:smile:

To advocate this hard for a system that works in perfect conditions (but when something the least bit different happens) it completely shuts down..... I don't understand pining for it this hard.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Subaru says Eyesight and their other driver assist technologies can prevent 84% of crashes that occur. That's a pretty good number, but obviously not perfect. There are still times you have to think ahead and consider the limitations.
Pretty sure you guys are thinking that I believe the car should drive itself. Not the case.

I understand people need to take control behind the wheel and drive the car. I am not advocating for a self driving system with the eyesight system. I purchased my last car because it DID NOT have this type of tech so I could control the vehicle myself. To trust a system to keep you in a lane or break for you when an obstacle is detected kind of goes against my intuition as a driver in all ways. And it should everyone.

I don't want anyone or anything 'keeping me safe' that I can't trust. I don't want anything in my mind to tell me "it's ok" when it really is not ok..... and it has been proven that the eyesight system while good at specific things in PERFECT WEATHER conditions has limits as stated in the owners manual. Fog, Snow, blowing sand, vehicle emissions in front of you, someone lights a match and the smoke is too thick....:smile:

To advocate this hard for a system that works in perfect conditions (but when something the least bit different happens) it completely shuts down..... I don't understand pining for it this hard.
 

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Pretty sure you guys are thinking that I believe the car should drive itself. Not the case.
No, we don't. At least I don't.

To advocate this hard for a system that works in perfect conditions (but when something the least bit different happens) it completely shuts down..... I don't understand pining for it this hard.
Its almost as if we really like the product or something ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
No, we don't. At least I don't.



Its almost as if we really like the product or something ;)
Haha, Like it! This will be my first subaru and the fierce following has definitely been seen. This is one reason the led me to the brand, because of people like you Jason. I want to know everything it can and can't do.

I am buying a Subaru for it's winter capabilities and trying to find out it's limitations. Thanks for all the answer everyone.
 

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Subarus and Snow mean LOTS of fun...

Haha, Like it! This will be my first subaru and the fierce following has definitely been seen. This is one reason the led me to the brand, because of people like you Jason. I want to know everything it can and can't do.

I am buying a Subaru for it's winter capabilities and trying to find out it's limitations. Thanks for all the answer everyone.
Well, for snow, the only limitation the Ascent will have is when the snow hits a foot high. :grin:

When we get buried in snow, people ask me why I am not plowing my driveway, and I tell them it's because I have a Subaru, and it really doesn't care either way. Which is good, considering I live on a dead end that is usually plowed last, many hours after I need to be at work. :tango_face_wink:

Just get some decent winter tires, or winter rated all terrains, and then... have some fun this winter!!!!!




 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I hope I can get fire to come out of my ascent like that???.

Great videos and amazing deep snow capability. My duramax would be doors deep and stuck no question.
 

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I'm going to have to disagree with you about Radar not working in Fog. I drive in in it every day and my real world experience says otherwise.

There is technology out there that helps cut through fog and looking at this one cherry picked article I found isn't extravagantly expensive.

Tech is advancing, it will eventually be here.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct...467f3849c58/&usg=AOvVaw3X9UhUp_6_dcSxc9VD1fgA
Radar has the ability to cut through fog to find a denser object, but cannot identify it well and its range is severely reduced. Radar also (contrary to the claims of the company that makes the vehicle units) does fail or mis-identify in dense fog. And radar cannot see line markings, making it dangerous to use by itself for adaptive cruise control. With MORE radar being put in cars, radar will become less capable of determining what's where due to radar noise (many emitters in a small area). There's all sorts of silly statements out there like "Radar isn't affected by fog... however the fog shortens the distance that you can track a vehicle using radar. Most radar units can pick a vehicle up about 1/2 to one mile away. In my experience during fog this is reduced to about 500 feet or even less." Yes, people literally claiming that radar isn't affected by fog, and then off-handedly admitting it's severely affected by fog - an 81% decrease in "visibility" (range) is massive, and not far off from how good cameras are impacted by fog.

2600 feet gets reduced to 500. We don't have massive aircraft radar dishes in our cars (and even those suffer decreased range in the clouds).

On the other hand... radar is better at penetrating fog than a camera staring into fog that's often illuminated by other cars' headlights. Radar is capable of working day or night while cameras have problems at night. Radar doesn't care about glare from the sun. Radar doesn't care if your wipers are on or off. Radar doesn't care how quickly your wipers are moving. Radar doesn't care if your windshield is dirty or clean.

Most cameras, but not all cameras, have limited capabilities to detect a vehicle in fog - though, that's actually easy to change with camera sensors that are sensitive to longer wavelengths, and possibly the addition of emitters. There's some playing with removing the IR filters from cameras (interestingly enough, it's a recent addition for the DSLR world, and detrimental to IR cams) and using IR emitters, as well as incorporating FLIR cams into the setups. Even though it's a lower resolution image than full spectrum, when IR data is added to "full spectrum" data, it allows a lot more info for processing, especially in fog, for instance.

So, each has their advantages and uses, and I wasn't trying to say otherwise.

But, for a car that has lane keep assist or lane centering, as well as adaptive cruise control, cameras are a requirement, and using radar alone to follow a vehicle when the car with the radar cannot tell which lane its in or which lane the car it's following is in isn't a good idea. :tango_face_wink:

Anyway, that's why I suggested that two or three technologies (one of which being the cameras) is a better scenarios than any one, and why I suggested that if only one is picked, cameras are the better technology for what the Ascent needs, since it can see lane markings and identify objects that even high resolution radar has problems getting enough detail to evaluate.
 
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