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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi,

Probably a dumb question, but the curiosity is getting the better of me. Hopefully, I didn't just skim over this information somewhere.

The EyeSight features in the car are impressive and luckily I have not yet needed to rely on them. Why not have a combination of EyeSight and forward facing radar, though, to fill in the limitations of the EyeSight system? Things like driving in fog or detecting stopped objects or uniform surfaces would be easier to detect.

I'm definitely not trying to say one is better or disparage EyeSight in any way. It seems like a combination system would provide even better safety.

I'm sure that there is an easy reason. This is probably the wrong place to post this, but I figured I would give it a shot.

Todd
 

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Cost is probably the top reason. About 5 years ago, this technology did not exist for Subaru. Tesla is probably the only one right now w/ different sensing technology, but they need it for auto-pilot.

Side note: the more technology we implement, the less responsible we (the drivers) become. The eyesight, to me, adds very little value to my needs. Subaru tries to carve out a niche for themselves as the only player (likely in either luxury or non-luxury segments) to provide top safety vehicle as standard option. Toyota, the top car manufacturer in the world, is planning to have their own eyesight as standard option for all vehicles. Somebody here mentioned that Toyota uses radar technology instead. After about 5yrs, we should see improvements in the technology, perhaps w/ both radar and camera.
 

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EyeSight and radar both have their pros and cons. Radar is better in bad weather, but EyeSight is smarter and more precise for vehicular applications. Radar is great at detecting objects, but EyeSight does that and so much more. EyeSight could often replace automotive radar but radar could not replace EyeSight. The EyeSight system is harder to implement, considerably more expensive, and requires considerably more processing power. The Subaru engineers had to select a system for the front, sides, and rear. Because of costs and manufacturing issues, they could choose only one system per side. The sides need only to detect objects, the rear does also but a backup camera was needed anyway for the driver, so EyeSight could be implemented there. The front, however, has to control the adaptive cruise control, the front collision warning system, the lane departure system, and the auto high beams, all at road speeds. Automotive radar can't do all of that, only EyeSight can.

Radar is a detection system that uses simple radio waves bouncing off objects to determine the range, angle, and velocity of objects. EyeSight is a vision system using cameras. It works like our own eyes (thus the name) to computer analyze via software everything within its field of view. For example, radar cannot detect the lines on the road and it cannot make all the decisions necessary to turn high beams on or off. So radar could not effectively be used for lane departure or auto high beams. Radar could not even be effectively used for the adaptive cruise control and the front collision warning system because while it can detect objects, angles, and velocities quite well, it would still have a hard time determining whether the object it detects ahead is directly in your car's lane or in the oncoming lane. Keep in mind such an object may be only a few feet apart side to side. EyeSight can do this far better by determining what lane the object ahead is in by observing the lines in the road as well as its relative position to your car. If the vehicle it detects ahead is in your lane it will then slow your car down so as not to hit it, if the vehicle it detects is in the opposite lane, it will ignore it and let it pass. Radar is great for things that are generally relatively far apart like airplanes, ships, submarines, etc. But for vehicles, which may be only a few feet apart from side to side, a vision system is required.

I hope this explanation helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
EyeSight and radar both have their pros and cons. Radar is better in bad weather, but EyeSight is smarter and more precise for vehicular applications. Radar is great at detecting objects, but EyeSight does that and so much more. EyeSight could often replace automotive radar but radar could not replace EyeSight. The EyeSight system is harder to implement, considerably more expensive, and requires considerably more processing power. The Subaru engineers had to select a system for the front, sides, and rear. Because of costs and manufacturing issues, they could choose only one system per side. The sides need only to detect objects, the rear does also but a backup camera was needed anyway for the driver, so EyeSight could be implemented there. The front, however, has to control the adaptive cruise control, the front collision warning system, the lane departure system, and the auto high beams, all at road speeds. Automotive radar can't do all of that, only EyeSight can.

Radar is a detection system that uses simple radio waves bouncing off objects to determine the range, angle, and velocity of objects. EyeSight is a vision system using cameras. It works like our own eyes (thus the name) to computer analyze via software everything within its field of view. For example, radar cannot detect the lines on the road and it cannot make all the decisions necessary to turn high beams on or off. So radar could not effectively be used for lane departure or auto high beams. Radar could not even be effectively used for the adaptive cruise control and the front collision warning system because while it can detect objects, angles, and velocities quite well, it would still have a hard time determining whether the object it detects ahead is directly in your car's lane or in the oncoming lane. Keep in mind such an object may be only a few feet apart side to side. EyeSight can do this far better by determining what lane the object ahead is in by observing the lines in the road as well as its relative position to your car. If the vehicle it detects ahead is in your lane it will then slow your car down so as not to hit it, if the vehicle it detects is in the opposite lane, it will ignore it and let it pass. Radar is great for things that are generally relatively far apart like airplanes, ships, submarines, etc. But for vehicles, which may be only a few feet apart from side to side, a vision system is required.

I hope this explanation helps.
Thanks. Makes sense. I guess I'm curious why not supplement the system to help in those situations where EyeSight doesn't work instead of solely one or the other. For example, my previous Sorento had both capabilities (albeit not as sophisticated a camera). I just think it is interesting that it isn't a combination.

Cost is probably the top reason.
It perhaps is something like this, but it seems common on other types on vehicles that are in a similar price range.

Like I said, not really comparing the benefits or saying one is better than the other. It just seems that if Subaru wants to be the safest brand out there they would combine the systems to address the limitations of EyeSight alone.
 

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Thanks. Makes sense. I guess I'm curious why not supplement the system to help in those situations where EyeSight doesn't work instead of solely one or the other. For example, my previous Sorento had both capabilities (albeit not as sophisticated a camera). I just think it is interesting that it isn't a combination.
For the reasons I explained, radar simply could not provide enough help to keep any of the safety systems working if EyeSight could not perform nominally.

If you implement a supplementary, non-critical auto safety system it has to be either fully functional or turned off, nothing in between. This is why Subaru shuts off the EyeSight system by default if it detects a fault in other systems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
For the reasons I explained, radar simply could not provide enough help to keep any of the safety systems working if EyeSight could not perform nominally.

If you implement a supplementary auto safety system it has to be either on or off, nothing in between. This is why Subaru shuts off the EyeSight system by default if it detects a fault in other systems.
OK. Thanks very much.
 

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...

Like I said, not really comparing the benefits or saying one is better than the other. It just seems that if Subaru wants to be the safest brand out there they would combine the systems to address the limitations of EyeSight alone.
I had a conversation with a co-worker about a parallel concept, why the design of iPhone lags behind Android phones. iPhone slowly transition the "Home" button from hardware to software because they want to "milk" the profit. Partially, I think Subaru is doing the same thing, slowly introducing features w/o costing so much, which is quite normal in the capitalism.
 

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Thanks. Makes sense. I guess I'm curious why not supplement the system to help in those situations where EyeSight doesn't work instead of solely one or the other. For example, my previous Sorento had both capabilities (albeit not as sophisticated a camera). I just think it is interesting that it isn't a combination.

It perhaps is something like this, but it seems common on other types on vehicles that are in a similar price range.

Like I said, not really comparing the benefits or saying one is better than the other. It just seems that if Subaru wants to be the safest brand out there they would combine the systems to address the limitations of EyeSight alone.
Interestingly enough, in all of the cars with pre-collision braking in the class, Subarus can stop their cars (the entire Eyesight equipped line) at speeds that are 10-20mph faster than the competition, no matter what the same class competition is equipped with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
top reason is "price"

(Tesla Sedan VS Subaru Sedan)

Tesla low end start from $46,000 Before tax savings +Autopilot is $5,000-7,000 add-on

Subaru EyeSight is standard on cars from ~$26,000
Thanks. On my Sorento I had radar and lane departure (too early for the lane assist and pre-collision braking, but the car has it now). It was a combined system at a price near what I just paid for the Touring. I see it in a lot of other similarly priced cars. So, I don't think you need a Tesla for this. However, I get what you are saying on the lower end of the spectrum. I had the upgraded version of the Sorento and you would not get that functionality on the base version.

I appreciate all of the feedback.
 

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top reason is "price"

(Tesla Sedan VS Subaru Sedan)

Tesla low end start from $46,000 Before tax savings +Autopilot is $5,000-7,000 add-on

Subaru EyeSight is standard on cars from ~$26,000
Toyota Safety Sense is available on all of their cars now. It uses DRCC (Dynamic Radar Cruise Control). So, it's not just a cost issue. Personally I think a combination of camera and radar would be best for all road conditions. You could have a design where you utilize the distance data from both the camera and radar systems to compare against each other and use the more conservative one as input. For example, if the radar shows the car ahead of you is 100 feet away, but the 3D camera shows 90 feet, assume 90 feet instead of 100 feet or vice-versa. Likewise, if one sensor doesn't show data (camera in fog, for example), the radar should still work. I am sure I am oversimplifying things here and it wouldn't be free, but I also don't think the added cost would be that significant.
 

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Toyota Safety Sense is available on all of their cars now. It uses DRCC (Dynamic Radar Cruise Control). So, it's not just a cost issue. Personally I think a combination of camera and radar would be best for all road conditions. You could have a design where you utilize the distance data from both the camera and radar systems to compare against each other and use the more conservative one as input. For example, if the radar shows the car ahead of you is 100 feet away, but the 3D camera shows 90 feet, assume 90 feet instead of 100 feet or vice-versa. Likewise, if one sensor doesn't show data (camera in fog, for example), the radar should still work. I am sure I am oversimplifying things here and it wouldn't be free, but I also don't think the added cost would be that significant.

It's not just the hardware that costs more. The software costs would also double or triple. To integrate both systems reliably, you need a much more complex and fail safe system. You've added a whole other sensor input and now your logic flow has 2 weigh both systems against each other. You've added a whole layer of possible bugs and integration issues into an already highly complex software system (stereoscopic computer vision processing is non trivial!).


So you have a system that's very effective in most cases (90%?) and to fill in the remaining cases (10%?) you probably double the cost. And since it's not an auto-drive system, we can rely on the poor driver to actually do some of the driving! :D



Kevin (Computer Engineer)
 

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Toyota Safety Sense is available on all of their cars now. It uses DRCC (Dynamic Radar Cruise Control). So, it's not just a cost issue. Personally I think a combination of camera and radar would be best for all road conditions. You could have a design where you utilize the distance data from both the camera and radar systems to compare against each other and use the more conservative one as input. For example, if the radar shows the car ahead of you is 100 feet away, but the 3D camera shows 90 feet, assume 90 feet instead of 100 feet or vice-versa. Likewise, if one sensor doesn't show data (camera in fog, for example), the radar should still work. I am sure I am oversimplifying things here and it wouldn't be free, but I also don't think the added cost would be that significant.
For either system to be trusted they each need to be accurate and dependable.
I would submit that if they disagreed then you would never know which one is malfunctioning and they would both have to be switched off!
What if you start trusting the one that says 90 feet and then a second later they flip and now it's measuring 110 feet?
If eyesight needed a backup they would have added a third camera :)
I could see maybe switching to radar when eyesight shuts down due to visibility, but as mentioned by others I wouldn't spend the $ for a whole other system for that <0.5% case
 

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Subaru and Safety

I could see maybe switching to radar when eyesight shuts down due to visibility, but as mentioned by others I wouldn't spend the $ for a whole other system for that <0.5% case
The problem is that radar cannot figure out what it's looking at. Radar doesn't know a fog bank from a wall. Or a bunch of other things.

Lidar would be better to use in combination with the dual 3D stereoscopic color cameras in the Eyesight system in such scenarios. But, like @Kevin Williams mentioned (I'm a programmer and Information Systems Engineer), the complexity in processing data from both systems means a big added cost. Much more computer hardware, much much more complex software. I'd say hardware costs would triple, and software complexity would quadruple to make the Eyesight system truly (and safely) benefit from using lidar and the dual cams.

Fun link:
https://www.sensorsmag.com/components/lidar-vs-radar

Remember, we already have the best system in the class, even though others are using dual technologies. It's never been a matter of implementing both - it's a matter of being able to use both in a way that's beneficial instead of as a marketing tool like others do.

Perhaps some of these dual technologies setups come in second because they get a lot of false positives or false negatives when the two scanning technologies report back conflicting things? Or perhaps they just couldn't see the reason to spend the money to have the added hardware to process both data feeds and then to (also in real time) process those two data result sets against each other?

So, could using both technologies (and maybe throw sonar in as well?) make Eyesight better? Sure, but, at what cost?

Here's what I will say. Subaru is testing "Touring Assist" mode, which is "self driving" mode, Level II - in Japan. Until they're confident that the system can handle the disasters that are the U.S. roadways, we won't see it. But it WILL happen here, one day. That means likely a lot more improvements to the system than the already ahead of ours "Touring Assist" systems being tested. So, when we do see more cameras or more sensing technologies combined with our cameras, in a far more semi-autonomous vehicles, we'll be seeing something pretty darn amazing.

One other thing I can tell you... fully autonomous driving is on Subaru's roadmap as well. So, you can expect to see continued improvements to the "standard Eyesight" systems with each model year until those autonomous technologies are fully tested and finally released in this country. But like all things "Subaru and Safety" related, we won't see it here until they are sure it works and works well - even if others beat them to it (and sadly continue to crash into various things that humans would have seen).
 

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For either system to be trusted they each need to be accurate and dependable.
I would submit that if they disagreed then you would never know which one is malfunctioning and they would both have to be switched off!
What if you start trusting the one that says 90 feet and then a second later they flip and now it's measuring 110 feet?
If eyesight needed a backup they would have added a third camera :)
I could see maybe switching to radar when eyesight shuts down due to visibility, but as mentioned by others I wouldn't spend the $ for a whole other system for that <0.5% case
I think the main point of what I was trying to say was missed. Another poster mentioned that radar-based systems are reserved for very expensive cars -- hence the reference to Tesla cars. However, that's just not true as Toyota has them on all their cars now. I am not quite sure how the Toyota Safety Sense system also performs LKA with just radar, so I suspect there are other cameras involved. If that's true, it stands to reason that Toyota has, indeed, integrated both types of vision sensors (camera and radar) into their Safety System and at a price point that is affordable.
 

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I think the main point of what I was trying to say was missed. Another poster mentioned that radar-based systems are reserved for very expensive cars -- hence the reference to Tesla cars. However, that's just not true as Toyota has them on all their cars now. I am not quite sure how the Toyota Safety Sense system also performs LKA with just radar, so I suspect there are other cameras involved. If that's true, it stands to reason that Toyota has, indeed, integrated both types of vision sensors (camera and radar) into their Safety System and at a price point that is affordable.
But read my post. Toyota's system is still second to Subaru's. It doesn't matter if a car has radar (or lidar) or not. What matters is if they can effectively use it. To effectively use it costs a LOT more money (for now) which is absorbed into the price in a Tesla.

At some point, it will all be commonplace and not cost as much, especially with computers getting faster, cheaper for the speed and with programs becoming more capable, and AIs becoming more aware.

But we aren't there yet.
 

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But read my post. Toyota's system is still second to Subaru's. It doesn't matter if a car has radar (or lidar) or not. What matters is if they can effectively use it. To effectively use it costs a LOT more money (which is absorbed into the price in a Tesla).
For the record, I was responding to a post from denissh that was dismissing the idea that radar is reserved for more expensive vehicles such as Tesla. I was not responding to your post, sorry for the confusion. I wasn't trying to make this into a "Toyota Safety Sense vs Subaru EyeSight" comparison, but rather just pointing out that radar-based systems may have been integrated into a camera-based system already by Toyota. Nothing more. I was also musing at how cool it would be to have a system like EyeSight have better inputs to make better decisions. Using different wavelengths of light to help provide better input data is something to aim towards.
 

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I was just trying to put together a system that gets me across Trail Ridge Road at night in the clouds... :)
Just a few more years, and the new Ascent may just do that for you. :tango_face_wink:
 

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I think the main point of what I was trying to say was missed. Another poster mentioned that radar-based systems are reserved for very expensive cars -- hence the reference to Tesla cars. However, that's just not true as Toyota has them on all their cars now. I am not quite sure how the Toyota Safety Sense system also performs LKA with just radar, so I suspect there are other cameras involved. If that's true, it stands to reason that Toyota has, indeed, integrated both types of vision sensors (camera and radar) into their Safety System and at a price point that is affordable.
I don't think anybody said that. However, I said it would cost more to use a combination of technologies. Tesla uses three technologies (camera, radar, and sonar) and it's evident (qualitatively) that you have to pay tens of thousands dollar per car more to obtain these technologies. They're first adopter and as the technologies becomes reliable (or patents expire) and competitive, we'll likely to see them on Subaru in the near future.
 
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