Infrared Thermal Camera-Based Real-Time Identification and Tracking of Large Animals to Prevent Animal-Vehicle Collisions (AVCs) On Roadways - FY11 NATSRL

Principal Investigator(s):

Debao Zhou, Professor, UMD-Mechanical & Industrial Eng

Project summary:

Animal-vehicle collisions (AVCs) are a major safety issue for tdrivers on US roadways. It is estimated that the more than 35,000 AVCs annually in the United States result in 3 to 11 deaths, more than 400 personal injuries, and close to 4,000 reported property damages of $1000 or more. This justifies the many attempts to try to detect large animals on the road, although very little success has been achieved. To reduce the number of AVCs, this research used an infrared (IR) thermal imaging method to detect the presence of large animals and to track their locations so that drivers could avoid AVCs. The system consists of an infrared thermal image grabbing and processing system and a motion-control system to track the objects. By analyzing the infrared thermal images, the presence of deer in surrounding areas has been identified and thus tracked. Since the IR thermal imaging is independent of visible light, the system can work both day and night, even in bad weather. The system can cover an area within a 1,000-foot radius for the identifying an object the size of an adult human.


Project details:

  • Project number: 2011016
  • Start date: 07/2010
  • Project status: Completed
  • Research area: Transportation Safety and Traffic Flow
  • Topics: Safety, Vision Systems