Together with Fujitsu, the clever boffins at Kia have worked out how to reprogram its standard car infotainment system for use in police cars.
The Korean company currently supplies its Stinger sports car to the Queensland, Northern Territory, Western Australian and Tasmanian police forces.
Working closely with Kia Motors Australia, Fujitsu has demonstrated that it can remove surplus equipment, software, hardware, and cabling from highway patrol cars — by integrating the required information systems and response controls into Kia’s existing system.
Fujitsu has created a software-based platform that links disparate technologies, reducing the cost of installation and de-installation, while providing a cleaner and safer cabin for law enforcement officers and others who work from their car.
The car’s existing Infotainment screen, which is shared across the Kia range, is programmed to present information and execute emergency response controls.
To build a highway patrol police car requires multiple tenders from numerous individual suppliers for each piece of equipment, from the car itself to Mobile Data Terminal (MDT), number plate recognition technology, In-Car-Video (ICV) and radar.
Fujitsu’s enhanced vehicle ecosystem integrates individual components, simplifying the installation and removal of vehicle equipment and bringing greater agility and efficiency to the police force.
By reducing the amount of physical technology within the car, the vehicle can be modified or serviced by any Kia dealer in Australia, reducing the time previously spent servicing vehicles at specialised facilities.
Any crooks reading this story will probably be thinking: I’d like to get my hands on that software mate.
However, Fujitsu’s solution embeds biometrics into the gearstick, removing up to seven existing logins.
Fujitsu’s Palm Secure secures sensitive information, while three single-feature action buttons on the front of the gearstick control emergency lights and sirens, enhancing the safety of officers who are no longer required to take their eyes off the road to operate a complex control pad.
Fujitsu’s Ian Hamer said, “Fujitsu’s goal was to develop a car that looked like a regular vehicle rather than a highly modified police car. By integrating systems into the inbuilt systems in the vehicle, we were able to remove excess bracketry inside the cabin.
“Working closely with emergency warning systems specialist Whelen Engineering, the team designed a new modular configuration of the lightbar that will result in a less invasive installation using one umbilical cord instead of nine separate cables.
“As a result, cameras placed in the lightbar are at the optimum height to record video evidence. This umbilical cord will then be mated to the KIA’s core wiring loom for simplicity of installation.”
Fujitsu will also integrate the radar into the car’s existing head-up display, removing the dash mounted control box and irritating doppler tone produced when using the radar.
In phase two of this development, artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities will identify a target car’s manufacturer and colour using onboard cameras, and these will also be able to recognise stolen cars in a busy carpark and traffic.
The technology will be able to detect if an offender has drawn a weapon and automatically send duress signals.
Fujitsu and KIA have developed a concept car to demonstrate the approach to police forces in Australia.