Published on August 16th, 2016 | by Emergent Enterprise0
Mercedes-Benz Uses Augmented Reality to Keep First Responders Safe
E-E says: What if the first responder to an accident scene had x-ray vision? Now firemen and women can use this Mercedes Benz AR mobile application to “see” inside the vehicle in front of them and know where airbags and fuel and electrical systems are located before they cut into it. This is performance support that can literally help save lives. Today’s post has two articles about the Mercedes Benz Rescue Assist mobile application.
First responders are facing a new threat — cars. Cutting into a 1994 Tercel isn’t the same as cutting into a 2016 Leaf. Whether it’s high-voltage cables, batteries in odd locations or other newfangled engineering trickery, being a first responder ain’t easy. But Mercedes is hoping to make it a bit easier, using augmented reality.
Rescue Assist is an app Mercedes-Benz created for first responders. It provides a wealth of data on all its cars, including commercial brands, so first responders know the best way to enter a vehicle. Now, it’s added augmented reality, giving folks a better idea of what parts are where underneath all that sheet metal.
Even better, the app doesn’t need to be used with an internet connection. All new Mercedes, Smart and Fuso vehicles come with a QR code that, once scanned, opens the app’s relevant data page. Owners of vehicles as old as the 1990 model year can have a dealership affix a similar QR code to their cars, so you don’t need to spend tons of money to be part of this.
The Rescue Assist app is available for both iOS and Android devices, and it’s free. It covers Mercedes-Benzes as old as the 1990 model year, Smarts as old as 1998 and Mercedes-Benz vans as old as 1996.
Mercedes Rescue Assist is like Pokemon Go for Saving Lives
Mercedes-Benz has launched a new augmented reality app designed specifically for first responders. Rescue Assist uses a tablet or smartphone to display vital systems on a wrecked vehicle, allowing first responders to take the safest approach to rescue.
So yes, it does work something like Pokemon Go, overlaying information on the view from a camera, but Mercedes’ system isn’t displaying Pikachus and Charizards. When first responders boot the app up at the scene of an accident, they get a 3D representation of the systems underneath a vehicle’s skin. That means fuel lines, high-voltage systems in hybrids and EVs, batteries, and safety equipment like airbags are all rendered in interactive detail for rescuers. They can zoom and rotate, all in order to get an ideal image of the situation and proceed safely. In short, it takes some of the guesswork out of sawing a car open.
The app is an evolution of the existing Rescue Assist program, which allows emergency workers to look up static schematics of a vehicle quickly online. The AR app works without a WiFi or cellular signal and is preloaded with info on every Mercedes passenger vehicle built after 1990, every Mercedes van from 1996, and every Smart since the first one from 1998. It also works with certain Fuso Canter and Canter commercial vehicles. Like the previous iteration of Rescue Assist, the app relies on a QR code on the B-pillar or inside the fuel door of newer models. Owners of older cars will need to go to their dealer to get the right code sticker. We guess Mercedes went this route to prevent rescuers from selecting the wrong vehicle – imagine the danger of cutting into a hybrid with the overlay of a gas model – but it’s possible vehicle owners won’t know or understand the sticker’s importance and might not make the effort to get one.
The app will be free on iOS and Android and available in 24 languages.