Stacy Balk: The accuracy of observers’ estimates of the effect of glare on nighttime vision…

  • Student: Stacy Balk
  • Date: Wednesday December 2
  • Time: 9:15 AM
  • Location:  419 Brackett Hall

The accuracy of observers’ estimates of the effect of glare on nighttime vision: Do we exaggerate the disabling effects of glare?

Designing headlights involves balancing two conflicting goals: maximizing visibility for the driver and minimizing the disabling effects of glare for other drivers. In recent years, especially since the introduction of high intensity discharge headlamps, there have been a large number of complaints about headlight glare. It is unknown whether these complaints are more motivated by glare-induced feelings of discomfort or by drivers’ belief that headlight glare is disrupting their ability to see at night. Two experiments – a lab-based psychophysical study and an outdoor field study – are proposed to quantify the accuracy of observers’ estimates of the effects of glare on vision.  It is hoped that the results of these two studies will aid in understanding the relationship between the perceived and actual effects of glare on vision.

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