Renault experts patented parking with one pedal

For years, Renault engineers have not stopped devising new ways to make drivers’ lives more comfortable, convenient and safer. By his invention Parking with one pedal, Jong-Hoon Systems Development Engineer and Pape Algorithm Development Engineer fully follow a tradition based on turning obstacles into advantages

Louis Renault first patented a manual transmission in 1898. A few weeks later, with the support of his brothers Marcello and Fernando, he founded Renault Frères. Thus began an industrial adventure aimed at encouraging Renault engineers to outdo themselves in terms of innovation. And Jong-Hoon and Pape certainly do! During the work on the development of an advanced parking assistance system, just two months before the end of the project, a “war with the keys” broke out. Despite this, they had to find a solution to complete their project.

Easier car parking

Renault has been offering for years driving assistance systems to simplify for customers parking. In the beginning they were parking sensors which were produced from 1990 to 2000. They were originally installed in the rear of the vehicle, and then in the front. “You no longer had to get out of the car to check if you had more parking spaces.”, adds Pape.

A few years later, reversing camera or even a 360 ° camera that offers a “bird’s eye view” has completed this system. “Audible signals are now accompanied by an obstacle position display on the multimedia screen integrated into the car’s control panel”, continues Jong-Hoon.

By presenting parking assistance system Easy Park Assist in the Espace 5 model in 2015, we made a big step, ”emphasizes Pape. When the driver turns on this system, the vehicle looks for a parking space that matches its size, and then only determines the path “taking control” of the steering wheel. Meanwhile, the driver controls acceleration, braking, reversing between reverse and forward as well as the parking brake.

In the redesigned Espace of 2019, Renault went a step further in parking automation. Renault engineers have constructed an internal parking assistance system that takes control of the steering wheel, from finding a parking space to a complete stop. Advanced parking assistance system replaced Easy Park Assist.

This ambitious mission is entrusted to our promising engineers. Jong-Hoon, a driving assistance system development engineer, took responsibility for the conceptual design of the system, and Pape, a driving assistance algorithm development engineer, had to implement it. With one important limitation: the system had to remain only driving assistance, and not take complete control of the vehicle. So it was important to ensure that the driver stays on caution during maneuvering.

Cat cough for Jong-Hoon and Pape! Taster, which the driver will have to keep pressed, made this mission easily achievable. “The driver just has to press a button to start the maneuver, release it if there is any problem and press it again to finish parking the vehicle”, explains Jong-Hoon. The button is located on the center console, as the cruise control / speed limiter on / off button has been moved to the steering wheel. The driver can press the button comfortably by leaning on the armrest – ergonomics guaranteed. Ideal for a maneuver that lasts about ten seconds!

However, the development of another function was not taken into account: the electric parking brake, which was retested and considered to have an advantage over the advanced parking assist system. Just a few months before the vehicle was supposed to be placed on the market, the whole project failed! The original idea of ​​the button, which was supposed to ensure the driver’s attention, no longer existed.

Renault Automatic parking

From key to pedal

Removing the button, the most important element for keeping the driver’s attention and ensuring the commercialization of this function, was supposed to mark the end of the project. However, determination also prevailed inventiveness two engineers!

Jong-Hoon and Pape first wanted to add another button. But that was impossible at this stage of the project! Especially since in the new version of Espace the goal was to “clean up” the center console. Another possible solution, which they gave up very quickly, was to install a button at the bottom of the multimedia screen with the help of which drivers would activate an advanced parking assistance system. But they concluded that it would not be convenient to press a button with an outstretched hand during the entire parking process. The only alternative was to find another way to maintain contact. They finally came to a solution: accelerator pedal!

“We soon agreed that the best solution would be to use the accelerator pedal to maintain contact. This would ensure that the driver is alert and thus the accelerator pedal would be used in the same way as the button. Just press the pedal to activate the maneuver and release it to stop, ”he says Jong-Hoon, A Renault engineer to develop driving assistance algorithms.

There was less and less time until the vehicles were launched on the market, so they had to act quickly. Jong-Hoon and Pape began prototyping and soon embarked on internal tests. They worked fast, but efficiently! Their solution, called Parking with one pedal, attracted customers, won them over and convinced them. Several customers were given the opportunity to try out the innovation and their reactions were more than positive. “The tests performed brought very positive results – customers were satisfied, because the system is very easy to use”, stressed the Pope.

The development of the pedal was completed in record time: in just two months! “Changing the concept within two months was simply unthinkable!” But we still succeeded! It usually takes two years to develop this type of innovation”, Explains Jong-Hoon.

Right away have applied for a patent. Jong-Hoon is responsible for the architecture of the system and its functioning, and for the development of Pape’s algorithms. However, the real source of satisfaction was that this solution with a pedal is even better than the solution with a button.

Renault Automatic parking

First, because just handling is easier. The driver does not have to ask for a button to start the maneuver. Pressing the accelerator pedal is a more natural action. Second, because security is increased. In the event of a problem (for example, a pedestrian or animal crossing the road directly behind the vehicle), moving the foot off the pedal is instinctive.

Third, because the system has been improved. Shifting gears is now in the hands of the driver. Previously, the system determined the speed, no matter how hard the driver pressed the button. With an advanced parking assistance system and solution Parking with one pedal, now is it is possible to control the speed maneuver up to 7 km / h. And finally, earlier the driver had to wait for the vehicle to stop completely in order to start the maneuver, and now it is possible to do it “on the go”.

“With the pedal, we have achieved more than we would with the button, since it allows you to switch from the on / off function to the progressive control. Not everything went smoothly. It was a real challenge. But everything that happened allowed us to develop a solution that is even better than our initial idea, ”he adds. Pape, A Renault engineer to develop driving assistance algorithms.

The troubles Pape and Jong-Hoon faced prompted them to make the driving assistance system, for the development of which they were in charge, even easier to handle. The system in the Espace model proved to be so successful and practical that it was later installed in the Novi Mégane E-TECH Electric. Invisible and intuitive, it blends perfectly with the minimalist and modern interior of the new model.


Source: Auto magazin by www.magazinauto.com.

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