Night cycling is about to get a whole lot safer (and more Tron-esque) thanks to Lumigrids, an LED projector developed by a team of engineers from Sichuan University. The device, which can be powered either by battery or by the rotation of the wheels, affixes to the bike's handlebars and projects a square grid on the ground ahead. As the road surface changes, the grid bends, curves and changes shape to highlight the potential hazards ahead.
Lumigrids took home the 'best of the best' Red Dot Design Award for 2012. In the award entry, they explain how it works:
On a flat road surface, the grid will consist of standard squares. On a rough road surface, the grids will deform accordingly. By observing the motion and deformation of the grids, the rider can intuitively understand the landforms ahead. In addition, the luminous grids can make it easier for nearby pedestrians and vehicles to notice the bicycle, reducing the likelihood of collision.
Lumigrids has three modes with different grid sizes that can be used to adapt to different situations: normal (140x180mm), high-speed (140x260mm), and team (300x200mm).
It hasn't yet been announced when Lumigrids is slated to hit the market, but we'll be keeping our eyes open for this one.
(via Yanko Design)