Can Laser Guided Autonomous Cars Solve Light Pollution

Thinking Highways
By Thinking Highways April 21, 2016 12:40

Can Laser Guided Autonomous Cars Solve Light Pollution


Ford released a video of “Project Nightonomy,” its nighttime autonomous vehicle tests. The green-tinted night vision video shows a prototype Ford Fusion navigating the company’s Arizona test track while only using LIDAR. The Fusion handles the test with ease, navigating the dark desert night as effortlessly as it handles a well-lit road.

“As soon as I look out the window all I saw was blackness,” the safety driver in the front seat states in the video.

It’s a blackness that is becoming more and more rare in the United States. Urban sprawl and street lamps along highways have lit a lot of the shadows that used to cover the country. Light pollution makes stargazing practically impossible, and, as a Florida Atlantic University study notes, not a single species evolved for continuous lighting, and not a single species “truly benefits from it in the long run.” Birds, reptiles, insects, and even humans are negatively affected by the never ending glow of modern life.

Thinking Highways
By Thinking Highways April 21, 2016 12:40