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1. (WO2018098122) SYSTÈME DE NOTIFICATION ET PROCÉDÉ D'ALERTE DE CONTENUS DE VALEUR DANS UN VÉHICULE
Note: Texte fondé sur des processus automatiques de reconnaissance optique de caractères. Seule la version PDF a une valeur juridique

I claim:

1. A vehicle notification system for communicating with a driver of a passenger vehicle, after the vehicle's driving j ourney has ended, that a child, pet or valued object remains present within the vehicle, comprising:

a) at least one detection device including a means for detecting a presence or a restraint of a child, pet or valued object, within the vehicle, and a transmitter configured to transmit a presence/restraint status signal;

b) a portable controller device that attaches to the On-Board Diagnostic II (OBD-II) port of the vehicle, including a microcontroller, a network interface, a transceiver, the

microcontroller configured to interact with the network of the vehicle to determine the status of the vehicle journey as being underway or ended, and the transceiver configured to receive the presence/restraint status signal transmitted by the detection device, and to transmit a vehicle journey status signal and a presence/restraint status signal; and

c) a mobile communication device in the possession of the driver or other vehicle occupant, that includes a microprocessor that incorporates a software application, and a transceiver, wherein the software application configures the transceiver to receive the vehicle journey status signal and the presence/restraint status signal transmitted by the controller device, and wherein the software application generates an alarm signal in response to a predetermined condition of the presence/restraint status and the vehicle journey status.

2. The vehicle notification system according to Claim 1 wherein the predetermined condition of the presence/restraint status is an active status wherein the detecting means detects the presence or the restraint of the child, pet or valued object within the vehicle, and the predetermined condition of the vehicle journey status is an ended vehicle journey.

3. The vehicle notification system according to Claim 1 wherein the mobile

communication device is a smartphone, and the transceiver of the smartphone includes a Bluetooth® or Bluetooth® LE transceiver operating in the 2.4 GHz range.

4. The vehicle notification system according to Claim 3 wherein the software application of the smartphone configures the Bluetooth® transceiver to transmit a notification signal intermittently while the software application is running on the smartphone, which can be received by the controller device, to notify the controller device that the smartphone is in the vicinity of the controller device.

5. The vehicle notification system according to Claim 4 wherein the controller device is configured selectively to generate an alarm signal in response to a predetermined condition of the vehicle journey status and the presence/restraint status when the notification signal from the smartphone has not been received for a period of time.

6. The vehicle notification system according to Claim 4 wherein the transceiver of the smartphone can be configured to activate the software application in response the receipt of a signal transmitted by the controller device, the transmitted signal selected from the group consisting of the vehicle journey status signal and the presence/restraint status signal.

7. The vehicle notification system according to Claim 1 wherein the alert signal generated by the mobile communication device is selected from the group consisting of a visual message or signal on a display, a visual signal on a light source, an audible message or signal, or an electronic broadcast of a message or signal to a third party mobile

communication device or network device.

8. The vehicle notification system according to Claim 7 wherein the controller device is configured to continuously monitor for a notification signal transmitted by the mobile communication device, or smartphone, and to emit an alarm signal in response to the predetermined condition of the vehicle journey status and the presence/restraint status, if the controller device has not detected a notification signal from the smartphone for more than a period of time.

9. The vehicle notification system according to Claim 1 wherein the detection device includes a device for sensing or detecting the actual or inferred presence of the child, pet or valued object, based on a physical parameter of the child, pet or valued object, or a device for inferring the presence of the child, pet or valued object, based on the status of a restraint device as either being engaged or disengaged, or a device including a means for fastening or attaching the detection device to the child, pet, or valued object, and means for transmitting the detection status signal.

10. The vehicle notification system according to Claim 3 wherein the software application of the smartphone configures the Bluetooth® transceiver to detect whether the controller device is engaged and detecting the smartphone presence.

11. The vehicle notification system according to Claim 10 wherein the controller device is configured selectively to generate an alarm signal in response to a predetermined condition of the vehicle journey status and the presence/restraint status when the smartphone is determined to have lost contact after initially detecting the smartphone presence for a period of time.

12. A vehicle notification system for communicating with a driver of a passenger vehicle, after the vehicle's driving j ourney has ended, that a child, pet or valued object remains present within the vehicle, comprising:

a) at least one detection device including a means for detecting a presence or a restraint of a child, pet or valued object, within the vehicle, and a transmitter configured to transmit a presence/restraint status signal;

b) a controller that either attaches to the On-Board Diagnostic II (OBD-II) port of the vehicle or is programmed from the vehicle's current vehicle onboard processor software and uses the vehicle's remote keyless entry (RKE) antenna, entertainment/information

("infotainment") system, Bluetooth or WiFi systems, and/or its OBD-II subsystems, including a microcontroller, a network interface, a transceiver, the microcontroller configured to interact with the network of the vehicle to determine the status of the vehicle joumey as being underway or ended, and the transceiver configured to receive the presence/restraint status signal transmitted by the detection device, and to transmit a vehicle joumey status signal and a presence/restraint status signal; and

c) a mobile communication device in the possession of the driver or other vehicle occupant, that includes a microprocessor that incorporates a software application, and a transceiver, wherein the software application configures the transceiver to receive the vehicle joumey status signal and the presence/restraint status signal transmitted by the controller device, and wherein the software application generates an alarm signal in response to a predetermined condition of the presence/restraint status and the vehicle joumey status.

13. A method for notifying a driver or other vehicle occupant that a child, a pet or a valued object remains present or restrained within the vehicle after journey of the vehicle has ended, comprising the steps of:

i) providing a detection device, controller device, and smartphone operating the software program, as described above;

ii) positioning a child, pet or valued object in a vehicle, detecting by the detection device that the child, pet or valued object positioned in the vehicle is present or restrained, and transmitting by the transmitter of the detection device, an active detection signal;

iii) receiving by the transceiver of the controller device, the active detection signal sent by the detection device, and re-transmitting intermittently by the transceiver of the controller device, the active detection signal for receipt by the smartphone;

iv) receiving by the transceiver of the smartphone, the active detection signal sent by the controller device, and entering an active detection status into memory;

v) driving the vehicle by a driver to establish a vehicle status as 'underway';

vi) terminating by the driver of the vehicle journey, and detecting the change in vehicle joumey status as 'ended', and transmitting by the controller device of the ended journey status signal for receipt by the smartphone;

vii) receiving by the transceiver of the smartphone, the ended j ourney status signal sent by the controller device, and entering an ended journey status into memory;

viii) determining by the smartphone the condition that the journey has ended and that the child, pet or valued object remains present or restrained in the vehicle, and activating an alert signal for a predetermined period of time;

ix) terminating the alert signal if the child, pet or valued object is removed or released from the vehicle, and an inactive detection signal transmitted by the detection device, and retransmitted by the controller device, is received by the smartphone; and

x) generating an alarm signal by the smartphone if an inactive detection signal is not received by the smartphone within the predetermined period of time.

14. The method according to Claim 13 wherein the controller device intermittently and continuously transmits the vehicle journey status signal and the presence/restraint status signal.

15. The method according to Claim 13 wherein the controller device terminates the transmission of the ended journey signal after a set time if the presence/restraint status was inactive when the vehicle j oumey ended, or if the presence/restraint status changed from 'active' to 'inactive' after the vehicle journey status changed from 'underway' to 'ended' .