Project Aura - Bike Lights.

Written by Thomas Baekdal | Saturday, May 28, 2011

We all know it very dangerous to be a cyclist on our ever busy and congested city streets, especially in the late evenings or early mornings. Two guys, Ethan Frier and Jonathan Ota, have come up with a solution. Make the wheels themselves light up as you drive along.

Riding at night can be a daunting and dangerous task, an issue many bike commuters deal with daily. We are both bikers and we know how intimidating it sometimes is to be cycling on the same roads as a car or truck weighing 100 times what we do - being pushed to the far edges of the road shoulder and always having to worry about the large consequences of a driver's small mistake. We wanted to develop a system which increased the visual presence of bikers at night.
Attachable front and rear lights are great at making riders seen, but they are not always the most effective way of increasing visibility to all motorists, especially from the side. Additionally, front and rear lights do little to identify a biker as a biker as opposed to an ambiguous blinking point of light. Many bikes have reflectors on the wheels and the frame. But reflectors are only effective when they are in the direct headlight of an automobile, an inadequate solution.
By illuminating the rims, we have created an immediate formal context for drivers to identify bikers as bikers and take the appropriate measures to drive safely in their vicinity. The goal of the project was to rethink the paradigm of bike lights, while increasing convenience and safety and integrating everything into a package which did not detract from the pure aesthetic of the bike coveted by riders.

Head over to their project blog to see more.

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