Thursday, 31 May 2018 08:32

ASA Partners With Bosch for 5th, Final Webinar: Recalibrating Driver Assistance Systems

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On Wednesday, May 16, the Automotive Service Association (ASA) partnered with Bosch for the fifth and final webinar of their series on scanning: “Recalibrating Driver Assistance Systems: The Road to Repairing Autonomous Vehicles – Collision Avoidance System Recalibration.” 

ASA Vice President Tony Molla began the webinar by welcoming attendees and thanking Bosch’s Doc Watson and Pat Pierce for their patience throughout the series. He reminded attendees that the webinar would focus on key procedures for both collision and mechanical repair and that the tips provided also apply to other brands of scan tools. 

Before starting the training video, Watson shared, “As a representative for Bosch, we’re happy to have as many attendees as we do today. This is a big topic in our industry, and whether you’re in collision [or] mechanical repair, it applies to all of us.”

The video began by looking at the ADAS systems being used today and defining a long list of enhanced features and technology that are integrated into modern vehicles. Bosch’s stance on scanning aligns with most OEMs’ position statements that support pre- and post-scans of vehicles to help identify potential collision and non-collision related DTCs. It also supports reporting all DTCs to the vehicle owner and the insurance company. 

Discussing adaptive lighting systems that could have several sensors located in many different areas of the vehicle, Watson shared common locations and how to determine when calibration is necessary. He also discussed common locations for blind spot sensors that monitor the location of other vehicles that the driver cannot see. Calibration of this feature often includes removal of the sensor as well as removal of the bumper cover to avoid damaging the mounting location.

Regarding forward radar sensors, it is important to monitor the forward distance of objects in front of the vehicle and to control the following distance because systems use this data when calibration is required. Park assist sensors---ultrasonic sensors located in the front and rear bumper covers---monitor the distance between the vehicles and other objects, and calibration or aiming may need to be done after removal of the bumper cover, removal of the sensor or an impact on or near the sensor. 

Calibration of a steering angle sensor may be needed after airbag deployment, structural repairs or a wheel alignment. This is important because the steering angle sensor controls the lane keep assist, blind spot detection and adaptive lighting. Watson continued to discuss the use of and when calibration is needed on the following: adaptive lighting systems (after suspension or structural repairs, headlight replacement or windshield replacement), blind spot sensors (removal of the sensor, removal of the bumper cover or damage to mounting locations) and forward radar sensors (after replacement of a forward radar sensor but possibly after removal of front bumper/grille, after front structural repairs, or after removal and installation of the forward radar unit).

Utilizing multiple cameras to provide a bird’s-eye view of the vehicle, the 360 degree camera view requires calibration of all the cameras after the replacement of any of the cameras. However, some OEMs may also require calibration when a side mirror, bumper cover or door is removed. Forward-facing cameras almost always require a calibration or aiming procedure after replacement, but aiming may also be required after removal of the windshield, rearview mirror or the camera itself. 

“When vehicle repairs containing ADAS integration is done, there is a danger of misalignment, which can have a significant effect on the efficient functioning of the system,” Watson said. “If the camera or sensors are out by even a few millimeters, it can mean the difference between a vehicle avoiding a collision or not. Dynamic ADAS calibration is carried out with the use of a hand-held device plugged directly into the car. Often, the vehicle manufacturer will stipulate specific parameters for calibration of their dynamic ADAS. Static ADAS calibration is carried out in a workshop environment on a level surface. This form of calibration requires specialized equipment. Each car manufacturer requires different calibration settings for their static ADAS.”

Looking at the camera system, Watson demonstrated that the light reflecting off an object in front of a lens passes through the lens and is collected at a focal point before it passes to a charge coupled device (CCD), which then collects the light and sends it to a capacitor which, in turn, sends it to the amplifier where it is converted to voltage. The voltage is then sent to the controller for calculation. The controller will use multiple recordings over a given time period to calculate distance and identify deviation from normal conditions based on location, speed and distance using an algorithm.


Watson used several illustrations and clips to demonstrate how this works, stressing “The whole idea of ADAS systems is to help avoid accidents. The system tries to aid the driver to prevent accidents.”

The webinar concluded with demonstrations of camera calibrations for several makes and models, focused on reasons to carry out the calibration, what conditions must be met before calibration, how to calibrate the camera and what types of test drives are necessary after calibration. Bosch calibration coverage includes FCA, Ford, GM, Honda, Hyundai, Mazda, Mercedes Benz, Toyota and Subaru, but the company is continuing to increase its coverage to include all makes and models requiring forward-facing cameras for dynamic and/or static calibration.

Preceding Bosch’s question-and-answer session, Watson concluded by thanking those who attended the series. 

“We hope we have accomplished our goal of increasing your understanding of ADAS, its impact on the industry and how it impacts repairs and diagnostic procedures,” Watson said. “Our intent was to introduce and provide information and resources to support your understanding and interest in diagnosing and repairing systems, and we look forward to providing additional training sessions in the near future.” 

All five Bosch webinars are available online for ASA members. For more information about the association, visit www.asashop.org.