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Sensor to Save Children, Pets Left in Vehicles


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Waterloo graduate students Mostafa Alizadeh, left, and Hajar Abedi position a doll in a minivan during testing of the new sensor.

A small, inexpensive sensor could save lives by triggering an alarm when children or pets are left alone in vehicles.

Credit: Waterloo News

Researchers at the University of Waterloo in Canada have developed a device that combines radar technology with artificial intelligence to detect unattended children or animals left in vehicles when the driver leaves with 100% accuracy.

The device, which attaches to a vehicle's rear-view mirror or ceiling, sends out radar signals that are reflected back by people, animals, and objects, detecting when a child or pet has been left behind in a vehicle.

In such cases, the system would prevent vehicle doors from locking and sound an alarm to alert the driver, passengers, and others in the area.

Said Waterloo researcher George Shaker, "Unlike cameras, this device preserves privacy and it doesn't have any blind spots because radar can penetrate seats, for instance, to determine if there is an infant in a rear-facing car seat."

From University of Waterloo News (CA)
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