Feeds

BMW opens up to haptic car doors

The doors that respond to surrounding dangers

Security for virtualized datacentres

You may have been introduced to the world of electronic haptics by your smartphone’s virtual keypad, but now your car’s doors could soon begin giving you feedback about surrounding potential dangers.

Michael Graf, from car firm BMW, has – with a little help from researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) – designed a prototype car door that senses surrounding dangers, only allowing itself to be fully opened if the area’s clear of other cars, pedestrians and bikes.

Ultrasonic sensors are used to detect movement around the car, while accelerometers monitor attempts from those inside the car to get out.

However, a bar running through the centre of the door determines an opening restriction in relation to the distance of the potential danger.

For example, if another car is still some way off then the door will swing open freely. But if a fast-moving car’s nearby then the door will be harder to open for the passenger, reminding them that an obstacle’s nearby.

Michael Strolz, a researcher behind the technology at the TUM, told the New Scientist that the technology used in the prototype is mature enough for car factories to potentially begin pumping the doors out within 12 months.

BMW hasn’t decided if the technology will be implemented into its Beemers yet. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
SECRET U.S. 'SPACE WARPLANE' set to return from SPY MISSION
Robot minishuttle X-37B returns after almost 2 years in orbit
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
'Utter killjoy Reg hacks have NEVER BEEN LAID', writes a fan
'Shuddit, smarty pants!' Some readers reacted badly to our last Doctor Who review ...
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
White LED lies: It's great, but Nobel physics prize-winning great?
How artificial lighting could offer an artificial promise
NASA eyeballs SOLAR HEAT BOMBS, MINI-TORNADOES and NANOFLARES on Sun
Astro boffins probe fiery star's hidden depths
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.