I was invited to Israel last week to visit BrightWay Vision, a startup company developing a revolutionary night vision system, and I tried it out during a night drive.
In my career, mainly in the last 10 years, I have driven many cars equipped with night vision systems of every type. I have never before seen such clear images as with the BWV system. Pedestrians are detected at more than 200 metres—substantially more, according to my calculations—without any blooming!
The system is based on an innovative gated laser technology using a laser and camera in radar-like mode, with a very narrow spectrum width in order to avoid the glare blooming of the camera. It “slices” the road image ahead and then combines it to one coherent picture providing optimal detection capabilities even in bad weather. Two car makers have tested the system and its cutting-edge technology first developed for military applications by Elbit, the parent company.
Final evaluation of a production model will take place by Q1-2014 in accord with the road map for the development of the system in cooperation with OEMs. This week’s Driving Vision News contains a very interesting interview of BWV CEO Ofer David. DVN will present the product details in next week’s Newsletter.
What do I retain from this visit? It is well known that Tier 2 companies, suppliers of light sources, electronics, materials, components, mechatronics, and simulation play a central role in bringing lighting innovations to market. Companies like BrightWayVision and many other startups, labs and institutes have to be better identified because they can contribute a lot to automotive lighting innovations, provided they partner reciprocally with automotive OEMs.
DVN General editor