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On the road to night vision in cars

Flir Systems installs systems in BMWs.

Gadget Venue

There are several powerful LED systems to improve road vision in cars, and just as many for bicycles to be seen by them. But with so many night-vision solutions apparently in search of a problem, there must be a way to make the technology widely available for safer driving after dark.

Digital imaging company Flir Systems, which specializes in infrared photography, has taken a step toward that goal with a deal to install its "PathFindIR" thermal imaging technology in BMWs, according to Gadget Venue. The system improves illumination and detects heat (as in warm bodies) as well, displaying the images on a dashboard-mounted LCD.

It's not perfect, of course--it requires the driver to divert his eyes briefly from the road, for instance--and at $4,425 it costs as much as an entire used car. But if the technology can eventually be built into the windshield, we think it would be well worth the price.