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Google patents system that lets self-driving vehicles read turn signals


Front-facing camera gathers data for analysis by on-board computer

Aside from expanding autonomous vehicle testing from California to Arizona, Google is also further exploring new technology and systems that will assist self-driving vehicles in assessing the actions of other drivers or autonomous cars on the road.

A patent recently published by the US Patent and Trademark Office reveals that Google has a new scheme that will evaluate the turn signal from other vehicles in order to make the appropriate action/decision on the road.

The patent illustrates that a forward-facing camera will scan vehicles in front and then calculate the amount of light exposure it receives to determine whether or not the turn signals have been activated or it is the hazard lights that are flashing.


It will then give the vehicle’s on-board computer the necessary information to make a calculated decision while in transit.

Whether it’s a front-facing camera or Light Detection And Ranging (LiDAR), which is what Ford is experimenting on to maneuver autonomously in the dark, turn signal identification is a challenge that must be overcome if autonomous driving is indeed the next frontier in motoring.


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