A Matrix Infrared Sensor System for Improving Thermal Comfort in Passenger Compartments 2008-01-0835
Customers tend to require more comfortable climate control in vehicles. This paper is concern with a new infrared sensor that detects surface temperature at six separate locations, and a climate control system that incorporates the sensor. In a conventional system using an air temperature sensor and solar radiation sensor, climate conditions are usually controlled according to the thermal load. It is believed that more comfortable climate control can be realized by using an infrared sensor to detect passengers' surface temperature. The sensor consists of a lens, an IC with six thermopiles, a circuit and a case, and has been improved to detect in-cabin surface temperature accurately even under severe environmental conditions. The HVAC system controls the outlet air temperature and mode individually for each seat according to detected temperatures. The system estimates passengers' thermal conditions from the sensed temperature when a passenger gets in the vehicle, from a very hot or cold condition, and actuates the HVAC to adjust the climate condition on each passenger appropriately. This control realizes a pleasant thermal feeling of climate control.