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Seeing is believing: Eye-tracking technology could help make driving safer

Scientists take a new look at the importance of keeping your eyes on the road

Date:
September 24, 2019
Source:
University of Missouri-Columbia
Summary:
'Keep your eyes on the road.' With the recent advances in vehicle-assisted safety technology and in-car displays, this old adage has a new meaning, thanks to two new applications of eye-tracking technology.
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"Keep your eyes on the road." With the recent advances in vehicle-assisted safety technology and in-car displays, this old adage has a new meaning, thanks to two new applications of eye-tracking technology developed by researchers at the University of Missouri.

Designing a better collision avoidance warning

Observing how someone's eyes change -- specifically the pupil -- while they respond to an alert given by a vehicle collision avoidance warning could one day help scientists design safer systems.

"Prior to a crash, drivers can be easily distracted by an alert from a collision avoidance warning -- a popular feature in new vehicles -- and we feel this could be a growing problem in distraction-related vehicle crashes," said Jung Hyup Kim, an assistant professor of industrial and manufacturing systems engineering in the MU College of Engineering. "Therefore, a two-way communication channel needs to exist between a driver and a vehicle. For instance, if a driver is aware of a possible crash, then the vehicle does not have to warn the driver as much. However, if a vehicle provides an alert that, by itself, creates a distraction, it could also cause a crash."

Kim and Xiaonan Yang, a graduate student at MU, watched how people's pupils changed in response to their physical reactions to a collision avoidance warning by a vehicle-assisted safety system. Researchers believe they have enough data to begin the next step of developing a two-way communication model.

Evaluating rear-end accidents from a driver's perspective

A person's pupil could also help scientists find a way to decrease distracted driving crashes through a first-hand perspective into a driver's behavior, according to Kim and Rui Tang, a graduate student at MU. Using a driving simulator at the MU College of Engineering, the researchers evaluated a driver's physical behavior in real-time by focusing on the driver's eyes as the crash happened.

"We saw the size of a person's pupil changed depending on the behavioral response to the severity of the accident," Kim said. "Now, we want to take that data, find common patterns and build a model to test how we could help decrease distracted-driving crashes."


Story Source:

Materials provided by University of Missouri-Columbia. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Missouri-Columbia. "Seeing is believing: Eye-tracking technology could help make driving safer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 September 2019. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/09/190924133248.htm>.
University of Missouri-Columbia. (2019, September 24). Seeing is believing: Eye-tracking technology could help make driving safer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 15, 2024 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/09/190924133248.htm
University of Missouri-Columbia. "Seeing is believing: Eye-tracking technology could help make driving safer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/09/190924133248.htm (accessed July 15, 2024).

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