The developer of the smart apparel brand ‘e-skin’ Xenoma Inc. and Shinki Bus Group have launched a joint project to detect drowsiness in bus drivers in Japan. The aim is to improve public transportation safety and the overall work environment for drivers.
Many traffic safety projects use artificial environments such as driving simulations and Xenoma and the Shinki Bus Group are now testing a solution that uses smart apparel to measure the actual drowsiness level of bus drivers while driving. If drowsiness is detected, the driver will be made aware of that through the apparel.
Xenoma explains the factors that make this solution possible by explaining, “The e-skin material is so comfortable that it does not interfere with the task of bus driving. In fact, it feels exactly the same as normal clothing.” The company adds that any number of sensors of any type can be implemented anywhere into e-skin. Camera-based drowsiness detection systems must rely on facial expressions, which is not always sufficient to detect microsleep. These limitations do not apply to sensor-based e-skin, they explain.
In addition to drowsiness detection, the collected data is expected to deliver insights on factors and circumstances that lead to dangerous driving, near misses and accidents. The cooperation between Shinki Bus Group and Xenoma is based on a shared understanding that safety should always be the first priority. The future promises further shared projects on safety measures and initiatives.