Hyundai Mobis, a South Korean auto parts company, showed off its so-called concept of communication lighting at CES last week. The company said self-driving cars equipped with its communications lighting could detect pedestrians more than 450 feet (about 137 meters) away. Once detected, a bright red warning symbol is issued, indicating that it is not safe for pedestrians to move in front of the vehicle.
When the vehicle stops completely, the headlights project the crosswalk sign onto the ground, indicating to nearby pedestrians that they can walk safely.
The concept also uses LEDs, digital boards, headlight projection and sound to communicate with nearby pedestrians and vehicles in a variety of driving scenarios.
When pedestrians pass, the LED board begins to signal, in the way of a countdown, that the vehicle resumes driving while displaying directional arrows indicating the direction in which the vehicle intends to move. "Light has been used as a channel for communication between vehicles and pedestrians, so we are delighted to be able to lead the development of this technology to save lives and reassure all those who use it," said Mirco Goetz, director of engineering at Hyundai Mobis Lighting.