On Wednesday, Jan. 17, the Automotive Service Association (ASA) partnered with Bosch to host a webinar on Scanning for the Future, an introduction to the diagnostic scan trends that every collision and mechanical professional should know.
Tony Molla, Vice President of ASA, welcomed attendees to the first of a series of webinars on the popular topic of vehicle scanning, which served to provide a general overview and set the stage going forward so everyone would have the same frame of reference.
Bosch Technical Instructor Duane “Doc” Watson dove into Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), which are technologies that provide a driver with essential information, automate difficult or repetitive tasks and lead to an overall increase in car safety for everyone. Watson noted that some of these technologies have been around for a long time and are proven to improve the driving experience and safety on the roads.
“ADAS’s are on the cutting edge of emerging automotive technology,” Watson shared.
Looking at how collision warning and avoidance systems operate, Watson explained that a sensor installed in the front of the vehicle scans ahead for obstacles, and if one is found, the system will determine if there is any imminent crash danger and warn the driver if necessary.
Bosch is involved in a variety of ADAS’s, including adaptive cruise control, adaptive light control, automatic braking, automatic parking and blind spot control. The company is also the world market leader for radar sensors with 77 GHz technology, and one sensor facilitates several ADAS’s.
Exploring adaptive cruise control (ACC), Watson explained that this system actively helps the driver keep a safe distance from the driver in front by maintaining the speed set by the driver while adapting it to changing traffic. Combined with a rear-end collision warning system, the ACC can reduce the amount of heavy braking on freeways by 67 percent and reduce tailgating instances by 73 percent. ACC may use the following three types of sensors: mid-range radar sensor (MRR), long-range radar sensor (LRR) or the stereo video camera.
Automatic braking is a pre-crash technology designed to reduce the severity of high-speed collisions. Although automatic braking systems can prevent collisions, they’re typically meant to slow the vehicle to the point that less damage is caused and fatalities are unlikely.
Watson explained the differences between predictive collision warning (PCW), emergency brake assist (EBA) and automatic emergency braking (AEB). In PCW, the driver is warned with a short but perceivable brake pulse and/or automatic seat belt retraction, while EBA increases the brake pressure partially initiated by the driver to the required level for the current situation. If a driver does not brake, AEB will initiate if a collision is unavoidable.
A parking assistant uses an ultrasonic sensor in the side of the front bumper to scan the road for a suitable parallel or perpendicular space, sending out short ultrasonic impulses that are reflected by barriers, and in turn, the echo signals are registered by the sensors and evaluated by a central control unit, alerting the driver when a parking space is detected.
Once the driver activates the automatic parking assistant, the system calculates the best path into the space and assumes control of steering---both to enter and exit the parking space. Watson shared a video that demonstrated this technology at work.
Blind spot detection works by using two ultrasonic sensors on each side of the vehicle that monitor the space in the adjacent lanes to alert the driver to possible dangers in their blind spots by means of a warning light. An audible warning sounds if the driver ignores the lights and activates the turn signal to change lanes. The system does not trigger warnings for stationary items or in response to the driver’s overtaking maneuvers. A video demonstration of this technology was also shared.
Discussing how this technology will impact shops’ business, Watson predicted that the need for service information at the time of repairs will be more important than ever. He discussed why it’s no longer adequate to merely check the dashboard for lights, and noting that many OEMs now require pre- and post-repair scans, Watson advised against outsourcing these scans since that could lead to longer cycle times, decreased customer satisfaction and lost profits.
It’s not simple to determine when a scan tool is required since that answer is often based on the age of the vehicle, type and extent of damage, and which options the vehicle is equipped with. This means collision repair professionals must apply a level of sound judgement to each vehicle in need of repairs.
In April 2017, ASA released a position statement on pre- and post-repair scanning that coincides with many statements recently released by OEMs.
According to this position statement, “The Automotive Service Association supports the electronic scanning of all vehicles prior to and after collision repairs are completed in order to ensure that all potential damage has been identified to achieve a safe and complete repair.”
An image of two crashed vehicles showed that the one with the least visible damage had 11 codes fire on the pre-scan tool, while the other had zero codes fire.