Drone Lighting Systems: will it take off

Project manager
Henrik Svensson
2021-08-01 - 2022-08-01

Darkness is a well-known for increasing the risk of accidents for vulnerable road users. Johansson, Wanvik and Elvik (2009) concluded that the risk for cyclists increases by 55% in darkness, compared to daylight. This project aims to investigate how drones equipped with lighting capability could be a viable replacement for bike lighting poles in rural areas with a low frequency of cyclist and long distances. While an important and obvious motivation for lighting is that it can contribute to a perceived sense of safety, the current pre-study focuses on how such a solution may affect the traffic environment, the behavior of the cyclist and other road users, as well as the acceptance of such a solution.  In more detail, the pre-study focuses on

1.    investigating user acceptance and perceived sense of safety,
2.    identifying traffic scenarios that may have an impact on safety,
3.    draft a proposal of how the traffic scenarios should be tested and analyzed, and
4.    performing a concept based demonstration in relation to the identified traffic scenarios

The municipality of Skara is developing a bike pool system for travel between the city center of Skara and a tourist site called Varnhem approximately 15 kilometers from the city. This is performed partly in relation to the Interreg-project SMaRT that aims to contribute to sustainable transport solutions for tourism in rural areas. The pre-study will take advantage of the knowledge and solutions developed in that project and will contribute with innovative solutions that contribute to sustainable transport and road safety.  We believe that the major impact of drone lighting systems will be to reduce single bike crashes by increasing the visibility of the road for the cyclist, but also to some extent reduce the risk of collisions with motorized vehicles by enhancing the visibility of the cyclist.

Short facts

Project title: Drone Lighting Systems: will it take off
Project type:
Research area:
Road user behaviour

Safer – Vehicle and Traffic Safety Centre

SAFER is the open research arena where researchers and expertise work together to create safe mobility. Our traffic safety approach covers people, vehicles and the infrastructure – and together we contribute to safer road transports and smarter, more sustainable cities.

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