Ficosa develops intelligent interior mirror that improves rear view

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 31 Mar 2016

Tier 1 global supplier Ficosa has announced the development of an intelligent rearview mirror (IRMS).

The new system, which has an integrated display within the structure of the interior rearview mirror, works as a mirror or as a monitor that relays images from the camera located at the rear of the vehicle, as per the driver's needs. IRMS is the first product to come from the company’s alliance with Panasonic, integrating the know-how of Ficosa with the technology of the Japanese company.

According to Ficosa CEO, Javier Pujol, "This pioneering product is a significant example of the potential that the alliance with the Japanese multinational offers to us."

The intelligent interior mirror provides significant added value to the conventional mirror, enhancing the driving experience and increasing safety and driving comfort. It extends the rearward field of vision up to a value of 50deg (more than double compared to a traditional mirror), which considerably reduces blind spots. It also attenuates the glare and improves visibility in low light areas.

The camera built into this intelligent mirror is digital and offers a high resolution image. Ficosa says it has the ability to integrate the camera in various locations of a car, according to the preferences of automobile manufacturers, either inside or outside the vehicle. This system also includes a Panasonic LCD screen, which is located in the traditional structure of the interior mirror, being able to operate as a mirror or a display that transmits razor sharp images gathered by the camera.

IRMS also stands out for its ability to work split-screen as a mirror and monitor simultaneously. In this operating mode, it can also project the image of other devices integrated in the vehicle like a parking camera or even internal cameras to control children, among other devices. Additionally, it will also allow the inclusion of ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) in this vision system, giving information about surrounding vehicles to the driver.

The business unit director of Rear-view Systems, Mercedes Pujol, says: "At Ficosa, we have been working intensively for nine years on electronic mirror (CMS) research and development, which has given us valuable know-how to develop IRMS, improving the features of the traditional rearview mirror". She also underlines that "the company offers as an added value the option to integrate into the rearview mirror ‘Smart Sensor & Camera Cleaning’, an innovative solution that automatically removes dirt from the camera.

Currently, Ficosa is already working with various car manufacturers on the integration of intelligent interior rearview mirror, customising it to their specific needs. It is expected that the regulation in this field will be approved at a European level by mid-2016 and it is foreseen that vehicles can circulate with this system integrated by the beginning of 2018.