The company has outlined 11 new research projects including in-vehicle heart monitoring and algorithms that can understand driver interactions at intersections.

Toyota's Collaborative Safety Research Center has outlined nearly a dozen new projects, the first in a new five-year program to study the future of automotive safety.

Among the notable new research initiatives, several relate to integration of active and passive safety systems to provide "personalized crash protection" and improve overall safety.

One program will monitor occupant responses, such as kinematics and muscle activity, to evasive swerving and emergency braking using adult and child subjects on a test track, while another will measure how "minimally aware" adult occupants respond to such maneuvers. Findings will presumably help refine such systems to avoid injuring occupants when autonomous vehicle systems react to dangerous scenarios.

Another project will explore if vehicle systems could detect certain dangerous heart conditions, such as myocardial ischemia and myocardial infarction, that might require immediate medical attention.

Other initiatives aim to identify and build mathematical models of how drivers communicate at intersections, improve control transfer between automated systems and human drivers, and further research the benefits of adaptive headlight systems.

CSRC has launched and completed 44 research projects with 23 partner universities, resulting in more than 200 published papers.