Truck Driver News - MirrorEye: Smart Tech Enhances Visibility & Fuel Efficiency

MirrorEye: Smart Tech Enhances Visibility & Fuel Efficiency

In the ever-evolving world of trucking, innovation continues to reshape the landscape. One such technological marvel that has been gaining traction in recent years is the MirrorEye system. This groundbreaking system, developed by Stoneridge, is poised to transform the way truck drivers navigate the open road.

A Visionary Exemption

Stoneridge executives are confident that regulators will extend the exemption allowing MirrorEye camera monitor systems to replace traditional west coast mirrors on trucks. This exemption has been a game-changer, granting the manufacturer a five-year reprieve from the requirement of having two rear-vision mirrors on trucks.

The benefits of this exemption are substantial. By removing conventional mirrors, truckers can expect a 2-3% boost in fuel economy and an annual reduction of 2.5 tons of carbon dioxide emissions per vehicle. It’s no wonder that variations of these camera systems are featured on all four trucks participating in Peterbilt’s SuperTruck II program.

A Clearer View of the Future

MirrorEye systems provide a clear advantage beyond mere mirror replacement. Comprising multiple digital cameras and sophisticated software, these systems feed high-definition images to vertical monitors mounted on cab A-pillars. This expanded field of view, estimated to be 25% larger, enhances a driver’s awareness of their surroundings, ensuring safety and precision on the road.

Furthermore, the MirrorEye cameras offer color night vision, low-light sensitivity, and trailer panning capabilities. These features aren’t just about convenience; they can be lifesavers. Collisions involving right-hand turns, especially those where vulnerable road users like cyclists are at risk, can be significantly reduced.

Stoneridge has gone even further by introducing rearview cameras that track trailer movements. This innovation minimizes the need for drivers to exit the truck frequently, improving efficiency and safety. Moreover, the hardwired cameras require no additional wiring harness, simplifying the installation process.

The technology embedded in these cameras is remarkable. Graphics are added to the displayed images, including lines that track the trailer’s turn, calculated using machine learning and related software. It’s not just a rearview mirror camera; it’s a dynamic system that assists in various scenarios, including backing up and avoiding sideswipes.

A Deeper Look Into the Details of the MirrorEye System

To better understand the intricacies of the MirrorEye system, let’s take a closer look. From a driver’s perspective, the system is straightforward, but there’s a world of technology behind it.

Two camera wings are mounted near the roofline above the A-pillar. Each configuration is tailored to specific tractor makes and models to optimize the view. Each pod contains a narrow-angle and a wide-angle digital camera, providing rearward and downward perspectives. These cameras are not replaceable with off-the-shelf alternatives.

Inside the cab, drivers are greeted by a 13.4 x 5.9-inch monitor on the left-hand A-pillar. Stoneridge is also considering an optional 15-inch monitor for the right-hand side, providing the same view as the 12.3-inch monitor but with a larger image for improved visibility.

The monitors are divided into segments, mirroring traditional flat and convex mirrors. There’s a control panel on the dashboard that allows drivers to adjust the field of view, brightness, and even retract the camera pod. This level of customization ensures a tailored experience for each trucker.

One remarkable feature of these digital cameras is their ability to enhance the images they produce. Colors can be adjusted, sharpened, and contrast can be fine-tuned, all while maintaining a consistent brightness regardless of ambient light conditions. This means that even when driving through an underpass, the visibility remains optimal.

At night, the MirrorEye system switches to an infrared view, offering a unique perspective. Infrared light is beyond the visible spectrum, and human eyes cannot perceive it. The system renders this unseen world in shades of gray with subtle tinges of pink, green, or mauve. This adaptation eliminates glare from headlights and transforms the way drivers perceive the road at night.

Stoneridge ensures the reliability of the MirrorEye system by managing all four cameras and their associated images separately through electronics. This means that a failure in one part of the system won’t affect the others, except in cases of complete power loss. In such rare instances, the monitor screen defaults to a blue screen, ensuring that drivers are never left with a frozen image.

Furthermore, this system is integrated into the truck’s CAN bus, offering exciting possibilities for the future. Signals from MirrorEye cameras could be used to feed data into a collision warning system, alerting drivers to potential conflicts and enhancing safety on the road.

The Road Ahead for Truckers

As we peer into the future of trucking, it’s evident that innovations like the MirrorEye system are paving the way for safer, more efficient, and environmentally friendly journeys. The exemption allowing MirrorEye systems to replace traditional mirrors has opened up a world of possibilities for truck drivers.

With enhanced visibility, reduced blind spots, and advanced features like color night vision and rearview tracking, the MirrorEye system is revolutionizing the way truckers navigate highways and city streets. The future of trucking is bright, and MirrorEye is leading the way, ensuring that truck drivers have the tools they need to excel in their profession.

In conclusion, the MirrorEye system isn’t just a replacement for mirrors; it’s a visionary leap into the future of trucking, where safety, efficiency, and innovation are at the forefront. As regulations evolve and technology advances, truck drivers can look forward to a brighter, clearer road ahead. The MirrorEye system is a testament to the relentless pursuit of excellence in the trucking industry, and it’s a development that promises to benefit truck drivers and the environment alike.




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