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Sunday, May 29 2016 @ 10:58 PM UTC

Auto sensors for cars and now for pedestrians

Biking ElsewhereVia Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) • U.S. Department of Transportation (US DOT)

Once the FHWA determined the scientific approach to be feasible, Volpe awarded the small business a Phase 2 SBIR contract to move from concept to full-scale prototype. During this phase, Migma developed and tested a new infra-red (IR), light-emitting diode (LED) stereo camera that can detect pedestrians in near real time, day and night. The stereo camera has two lenses with separate image sensors for each lens, allowing the camera to capture three-dimensional (3-D) images. Researchers also developed pedestrian detection algorithms, enabling them to extract generic 3-D features from a stereo disparity map, which measures the difference between the two views.

The prototype can discriminate pedestrians from vehicles, taking advantage of the concavity of the human body. When the device detects pedestrians approaching the crosswalk, it can send a signal to the traffic signal controller to call the pedestrian phase for the person needing to walk across the street. Where needed for slow-moving pedestrians, who take more time to cross a street, the device can detect pedestrians still in the crosswalk and send a request to equipped traffic signal controllers to extend the "walk" signal until the pedestrian has safely crossed the street.

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