A New York-based company is developing a hands-free wearable device, dubbed Eyeronman, that uses sensors to detect obstacles and warns the wearer with vibrations. (Agencies)
Eyeronman consists of a vest outfitted with sensors and emitters for lidar, a laser-based system used in driverless cars; ultrasound, which is used by bats and other animals for echolocation; and infrared, a type of electromagnetic radiation used by pit vipers to detect prey by sensing body heat.
The system converts input from these sensors into vibrations in a T-shirt made from electro-active polymers, 'Live Science' reported.
For example, an obstacle on the wearer's lower left would cause the lower-left part of the shirt to vibrate. The system is designed to provide 360-degree obstacle detection, according to the company Tactile Navigation Tools.
The patent-pending Eyeronman system, which is still in the prototype phase, could also be used by soldiers in combat, police or firefighters, who may have limited vision at night or due to smoke from fires or explosions.
The researchers have developed a version that displays the sensor input to the shirt by lighting up LEDs, instead of producing vibration, but the principle is the same, said Dr J R Rizzo, a rehabilitation doctor at NYU Langone Medical Center, the company's founder and chief medical adviser.
A New York-based company is developing a hands-free wearable device, dubbed Eyeronman, that uses sensors to detect obstacles and warns the wearer with vibrations.