Transportation Science

How do rearview cameras help drivers?
Answered by Science Channel
  • Science Channel

    Science Channel

  1. A rearview camera system can help a driver enormously with problems of visibility when driving in reverse out of parking spaces and driveways, which is usually the most difficult time to see fully what's around the car. The system helps you to see what's behind your car without having to twist your head around at awkward angles, and eliminates some blind spots. You see the view on a small display screen on the dashboard - - right in front of you. It works through a tiny camera that can be mounted by your car's rear license plate.

    Depending on which system you choose, you should be able to see objects for a width of about 16 feet (5 meters), for about 5 feet (1.8 meters) from the back of the car. Most rearview camera systems take their power from car batteries and have wires between the camera and the display unit, which is typically on the car's dashboard. The digitized images are of good quality, clear with no distortion. The system is set up so it activates when you put the car into reverse gear. You can get one installed yourself, but more new cars are coming with factory-installed rearview cameras. There are also systems with four cameras to give you views all around the outside of your car.

    There is pressure to fit all new cars with rearview cameras, and manufacturers have been working to overcome cost issues to make the cameras more affordable.

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