Speaker: Srinivasa Narasimhan, Robotics Institute, CMU
Title: Programmable Headlights: Smart Lighting Solutions for the Road Ahead
The primary goal of a vehicular headlight is to improve safety in low-light and poor weather conditions. The typical headlight however has very limited flexibility - switching between high and low beams, turning off beams toward the opposing lane or rotating the beam as the vehicle turns - and is not designed for all driving environments. Thus, despite decades of innovation in light source technology, more than half of the vehicular accidents still happen at night even with very less traffic on the road. In this talk, I will describe a new DMD-based design for a headlight that can be programmed to perform several tasks simultaneously and that can sense, react and adapt quickly to any environment with the goal of increasing safety for all drivers on the road. For example, we will be able to drive with high-beams without glaring any other driver and we will be able to see better during rain and snowstorms when the road is most treacherous to drive. The headlights can also increase contrast of lanes, markings and sidewalks and can alert drivers to sudden obstacles. I will lay out the engineering challenges in building this headlight and share our experiences with the prototypes we developed over the past two years.
Srinivasa Narasimhan is an Associate Professor in the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University. He obtained his PhD from Columbia University in Dec 2003. His group focuses on novel techniques for imaging, illumination and light transport to enable applications in vision, graphics, robotics and medical imaging. His works have received several awards: Marr Prize Honorable Mention Award (2013), FORD URP Award (2013), Best Paper Runner up Prize (ACM I3D 2013), Best Paper Honorable Mention Award (IEEE ICCP 2012), Best Paper Award (IEEE PROCAMS 2009), the Okawa Research Grant (2009), the NSF CAREER Award (2007), Adobe Best Paper Award (IEEE Workshop on Physics based methods in computer vision, ICCV 2007) and IEEE Best Paper Honorable Mention Award (IEEE CVPR 2000). His research has been covered in popular press including NY Times, BBC, PC magazine and IEEE Spectrum and is highlighted by NSF and NAE. He is the co-inventor of smart headlights which made several top 10 lists of promising technologies including Car and Driver and Edmunds. He is also the co-inventor of Aqualux 3D display, Assorted-pixels and Motion-aware cameras and low-power 'Outdoor Kinect'. He co-chaired the International Symposium on Volumetric Scattering in Vision and Graphics in 2007, the IEEE Workshop on Projector-Camera Systems (PROCAMS) in 2010, and the IEEE International Conference on Computational Photography (ICCP) in 2011, is co-editing a special journal issue on Computational Photography, and serves on the editorial board of the International Journal of Computer Vision and as Area Chair of top computer vision conferences (CVPR, ICCV, ECCV).