Melted nylon fibers

Pieces of melted nylon (blue) and polyester (orange) were recovered from an accident where a vehicle collided with a pedestrian. In the United States, a pedestrian is killed every 2 hours and injured every 7 minutes in traffic accidents. That’s the highest it’s been in the past 5 years.

The majority of vehicle-pedestrian accidents happen at night when it’s harder for drivers to see. Now, researchers at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid in Spain have designed a new system that senses pedestrians in low-light conditions by using their body heat. It can even detect pedestrians in total darkness up to 40 meters (131 feet) away, and they’re now working on the technology for mass production.

Image by Daniel Mabel and James Wentzel/Nikon Small World.