Design Engineering

McMaster researchers look to make autonomous vehicles safer


General Automotive 3D imaging McMaster University

The team is developing a system using 3D imaging to closely monitor the surrounding traffic.

Autonomous vehicles are become more and more the technology of the future rather than a mere concept. The rise of computer-driven cars comes with the added concern over safety.

At McMaster University, a team of researchers headed by Engineering professor, Saeid Habibi, is developing technology to help make self-driving cars safe on the road.

McMaster Self-driving car

Engineering professor Saeid Habibi stands in front a Ford car equipped with Lidar technology at the McMaster Automotive Resource Centre.

One way to make these vehicles safer is to monitor the driving environment. Habibi is developing a system using 3D imaging to closely monitor the surrounding traffic. The concept uses Lidar technology, a sensor measuring distance by illuminating targets with a laser light and video cameras.

This system is able to monitor the traffic and make predictions on future driving patters, allowing the autonomous vehicle to avoid accidents and identify problem drivers with heightened accuracy.


“We’re able to very accurately determine the speed, positioning, velocity and acceleration of cars around you,” said Habibi, a professor in Mechanical engineering. When it comes to people’s lives, Habibi explains that the margin of error needs to be zero.

The new research was recently showcased at the Canadian International AutoShow, running from Feb. 12 to 21 in Toronto, ON. The Lidar system was demonstrated on a Ford C-MAX ENERGI from Habibi’s lab.

The goal of Habibi’s research is to make monitoring and detection in self-driving cars more robust and precise. Habibi, a Senior Industrial Research Chair at McMaster, believes that in the next five years the technology will make its way into the market.


Stories continue below

Print this page

Related Stories