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bollardVisual Performance from Automobile Headlights along High-speed Curves

Automobile manufacturers have recently begun to replace traditional headlamps with high intensity discharge (HID) lights. These higher luminous efficacies achieve brighter forwards-light, but few studies have looked into their effectiveness in special driving situations, such as entering curves, inclement weather, or driving in pedestrian-rich environments.

Researchers at the LRC explored the effectiveness of car headlamps in high-speed curve scenarios, in the hopes of exploring the impacts of target locations and reflectance, headlamp illumination, and headlamp's ability to detect small targets located along the periphery.

Results indicate that the further the object is from the automobile, the longer the reaction time is of the driver. The relationship between headlamp intensity is weakest for targets closest to the driver and closest to the line of sight, and becomes stronger as targets move away from the observer and further from the line of sight. Modification of headlamp beam patterns through swiveling of low beam headlamp distributions at a fixed angle of 10 degrees toward the side of the curve probably "overshoots" high-speed curves toward the right-hand side, but will increase illumination along left-hand, high-speed curves.

 

Publications

Bullough, John. "Visual Performance from Automobile Headlamps along High-speed Curves." Advances in Natural and Applied Sciences, 3(1): 35-42, 2009.

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