Hyundai Mobis launches new lighting technology that may reduce accidents involving autonomous cars

Jan 10, 2019   Technology

Hyundai Mobis showcased the latest Communication Lighting concept at CES 2019. Communication Lighting uses an “Indicating Lighting Zone” to indicate when an autonomous vehicle is operating in self-driving mode.

The concept also includes a “Communication Lighting Zone” that uses LED, digital boards, headlamp projection and sound to communicate with nearby pedestrians and vehicles during various driving scenarios, ensuring safer cohabitation.

Hyundai Mobis developed the concept to reduce the number of accidents related to the development and testing of autonomous vehicle technology, such as the fatal accident that occurred in mid-March 2018 involving an autonomous test car and a woman walking across the street.

Autonomous vehicles outfitted with Communication Lighting can detect a pedestrian from more than 450 feet away. Upon detection, headlamps being projecting a bright red warning symbol indicating that is unsafe to motion across the self-driving vehicle.

When the vehicle reaches a complete stop, headlamps project a crosswalk symbol onto the ground to indicate to nearby pedestrians that it is safe to proceed.

As pedestrians clear the path of the vehicle, LED boards begin signaling when the vehicle is about to resume motion by counting down—similar to traditional crossing signs used today—while showing directional arrows that indicate the direction the vehicle intends to move.

Communication Lighting can integrate with Mobis’ Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS) enabled Adaptive Drive Beam (ABD) technology, or AADB—a headlamp innovation announced earlier this year. The integrated solution offers a more responsive self-dimming headlamp due to increased object detection and processing capabilities, with vehicle-to-vehicle, and vehicle-to-pedestrian interaction.

As OEMs, suppliers and technology companies race to bring higher levels of autonomy to market, the conversation continues to be centred around the safety, complexity, infrastructure and governance required for full autonomy. Because Communication Lighting is solely focused on using intelligent lighting solutions to save lives the solution could be introduced in new vehicles across OEMs much more quickly and cost effectively.

“Light has been used as a conduit for communication among vehicles and pedestrians for almost as long as the automobile has existed, so we are excited to lead the evolution of this technology to save lives and offer peace of mind to all that use the road,” said Mirco Goetz, Director of lamp engineering, Hyundai Mobis. “Our primary focus on the safe progression to future mobility will enable our industry to continue the advancement of autonomous vehicle technology, while helping to keep pedestrians and drivers out of harm’s way.”

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