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Toyota’s Collaborative Safety Research Center in the US has been very active since inception in 2011 and since has researched active safety, driver distraction, and at-risk traffic populations. Each year funding is provided for projects and this year is no exception. For 2017, nearly a dozen new projects have been announced including the first in a new five-year programme to study the future of automotive safety.

Among the new research studies, several will focus on integration of active and passive safety systems to provide “personalized crash protection” and improve overall safety ratings.

One programme will monitor occupant responses, such as kinematics and muscle activity, to evasive swerving and emergency braking using adult and child subjects on a test track, while another will measure how “minimally aware” adult occupants respond to such manoeuvres.

Another project will explore if vehicle systems could detect certain dangerous heart conditions, such as myocardial ischemia and myocardial infarction that might require immediate medical attention.

Other initiatives aim to identify and build mathematical models of how drivers communicate at intersections, improve control transfer between automated systems and human drivers, and further research the benefits of adaptive headlight systems. Till date, CSRC has launched and completed 44 research projects with 23 partner universities, resulting in more than 200 published papers.

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