Hammerhead shark-inspired car vision system

Written by Kfir Kedem – December 07, 2021

Reviewed by Asaf Kedem

US-based autonomous vehicle vision developer, NODAR, is improving on the camera(s) that are used as self-driving sensors. The founder, Leaf Jiang, spent years at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) working with 3D sensing applications. From these projects came the knowledge needed to start such a company.

NODAR’s product is called “Hammerhead” because of the way that hammerhead sharks see. Their eyes are far apart, which enables them to see better details that are far ahead. This is called triangulation and is exactly what NODAR implements. The company’s technology uses two cameras placed as far away as possible from each other on the car. This results in an autonomous vehicle sight system that is able to detect small objects up to 1000 meters ahead. The image below shows Hammerhead when compared to other self-driving vision technologies:

Auto Trendy’s take:

One of the main benefits of hammerhead sharks’ facial structures is that they are able to see 360 degrees. Now, the camera of NODAR doesn’t rotate based on what is going on around it, but the space between the two “eyes” enables larger 3D areas and objects to be seen. Multiple truck manufacturers released camera mirror systems (unrelated to NODAR) on their new trucks this year, however they do not utilize autonomous driving yet. The technology of NODAR could be hinting at the future of the truck industry, and the automotive industry as a whole, and of the use of such camera systems.