Safety Reflector for Pedestrians gets Connected to IoT

VTT Technical Research Centre (Espoo, Finland) and safety reflector company Coreplast Laitila (Laitila, Finland) have collaborated to create a smart reflector that can be wirelessly controlled via a mobile phone application.

When a pedestrian is approaching a dangerous crossing the reflector – which features sensors, LED lights, wireless charging, and communications – can be made to blink and alert car drivers. In the future, the reflector could communicate directly with smart traffic lights or cars to warn, for example, a turning truck driver that a pedestrian is in the area of a crossing.

The smart reflector is an example of enhancing everyday objects with new functionalities by connecting them to the Internet of Things (IoT). For example, a group of kindergarten children can be given a common indicator color that makes it easier to keep the group together. If one child wanders too far from the others, their reflector can be made to blink in a bright warning color.

It is also possible to connect the reflector to other on-line activities such as mobile gaming, which could make it more attractive among teenagers. Reflectors could be set to shine in a common tribal color or to react in real-time to gaming actions and to the track to which the user is listening.

“We are actively seeking new concepts and ideas based on which IoT technology can be used to create new types of services and bring a little more magic into our everyday lives,” says Vesa Pentikäinen, Research Team Leader at VTT.

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