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Headlight tech cleans rain from your view

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    The researchers claim a production version could be ready within a decade.

Could a headlight really block out rain droplets from a driver’s line of sight?

Apparently so, claim researchers from Carnegie Mellon University and tech giant Intel, who are currently testing the technology.

According to a report from CNET, first picked up by Autoblog, the technology uses a special headlight that acts more like a projector than as a pure lighting device.

A camera integrated with the projector-headlight monitors the road ahead, relaying images to a processor that can detect rain drops and remove them from a digital image that is then projected ahead.

The genius of the system is the processor’s ability to anticipate the path of each rain droplet, which speeds up the whole process to a time interval of just 13 milliseconds. The end result is a view of the road that is much clearer and with far fewer bright spots.

The researchers claim this will reduce driver stress and make roads safer during rain and even snow storms.

Apart from the cost and potential weight of installing a powerful projector in each of the car’s headlights, our only concern would be drivers not anticipating how poor conditions are outside their car due to the clear view being projected in front of them.

The researchers claim a production version could be ready within a decade.

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Comments on this story

Displaying 3 of 6 comments

  • Here in the future we have particle beam emitters affixed to all vehicles that actually dissolve each raindrop within a perimeter of 1 meter, dry the roads at a distance of 3 meters, and disassemble molecularly all erratic, slow, and violent drivers.

    J. Titor of The Future Posted on 07 May 2013 1:33pm
  • Ridiculous! It simply cuts out the light where the raindrop is. That means in a very heavy downpour the amount of light emitted from the "headlights" will be severely reduced. Sure, you won't see any reflections off the raindrops, but the headlights will be effectively off...

    think of sydney Posted on 07 May 2013 1:30pm
  • What about the rain that lands between the windscreen and the front of the car? Or should we mount the lights on the roof?

    Dane Posted on 07 May 2013 12:05am
  • I find that wearing sunglasses on rainy nights gives me clear vision so no need for any high tech gizmo's

    Mick Of Ferntree Gully Posted on 06 May 2013 11:59pm
  • Stupidest idea ever! Many drivers on the roads cannot drive in the rain now, so a false impression of the conditions can only make matters worse.

    Sezy of Perth Posted on 06 May 2013 6:35pm
  • I can't imagine if the rain was very heavy, then it will look like you're turning off the headlight. For small to medium rain intensity only.

    Jiraiya of Melbourne Posted on 06 May 2013 6:03pm
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