When a car's brake lights come on in front of you, especially at night, your mind has to process quite a few things. Are they coming to a complete stop? Are they slowing abruptly or gradually? Will I have enough space? A new design from Virginia Technical Institute takes almost all of the guess work out for you and should hopefully make the roads a little safer.
The new concept has been dubbed "Smart Brake Lights." By using a pressure sensor on the braking system, the computer can determine how hard you are applying the brakes. This information is the transmitted to the control unit for the light bar.
When you apply the "expected" amount of pressure on the pedal, the inside portion of the bar will illuminate orange. When a threshold of pressure has been reached, the outside portions of the bar will illuminate bright red. If you are making an emergency stop, the entire bar will flash red in an attempt to get your attention.
Team leader, Professor Mehdi Ahmadian, hopes to find a more cost effective way to produce the system and eventually see them standard on new vehicles. All I can say is, if everything does go through, driving at night will be much more fun.
Source : VirginiaTech