audi’s matrix laser headlights

Audi continues with it advanced R+D into projection headlights.

Interesting – looks like they have a couple different ways to achieve the projection – one a is a digital mirror chip (sounds like Texas Instruments’ DLP tech) and a second uses a single 3mm square rotating mirror (apparently from Bosch).  I clipped the two different slides below for comparison.

The TI DLP solution:

audimatrixlaser2

The Bosch MEM solution:

audimatrixlaser1

Images of the Bosch chip, which looks like it “paints” the optical image onto a phosphor plate before a focusing lens:

bosch-micromirror_intelligent_headlights_2bosch-micromirror_intelligent_headlights_3

Below is reposted from Audi’s promotional R+D page.  Also check out their other interesting lighting R+D projects.

Matrix Laser technology is based on the LaserSpot for high‑beam lamps, which Audi first introduced to production in the Audi R8 LMX. For the first time, bright lasers are making it possible to integrate projector technology in a compact and powerful headlight.

The new technology operates with a rapidly moving micro-mirror, which redirects the laser beam. At low vehicle speeds, the light is distributed to a larger projection area, and the road is illuminated with a very wide range. At high speeds, the aperture angle is smaller, and the intensity and range of the light are increased significantly. This is especially advantageous in highway driving. In addition, the light can be distributed precisely. This means that the brightness of different lighting zones can be varied by controlling the illumination dwell times in the specific zones.

Also new is intelligent and lightning-fast activation and deactivation of the laser diodes in relation to the mirror position. This makes the broadening or narrowing of the luminous beam dynamic and highly variable. As with today’s Matrix LED headlights from Audi, the road is always brightly lit without causing glare to other participants in traffic. The crucial difference is that Matrix Laser technology offers even finer dynamic resolution and therefore a higher degree of utilization, which leads to greater safety in road traffic.

In the new technology, blue laser diodes from OSRAM radiate their light, which has a wavelength of 450 nanometers, onto a quickly moving mirror that is three millimeters in size. This mirror redirects the blue laser light to a converter, which converts it to white light and projects it onto the road. The mirror used for this, which comes from the Bosch company, is a micro-optical system that features electro-mechanical control and is based on silicon technology. It is very sturdy and exhibits very long life. Such components are also used for accelerometers and control units for electronic stability control.

In the framework of the three-year “iLaS” project, Audi is working closely with its partners Bosch, Osram and the Lichttechnischen Institut (LTI; “Lighting Technology Institute”) of the Karlsruhe Institute for Technology (KIT). The project is sponsored by the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research.

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About Brad Koerner

Venture Manager - Luminous Patterns Philips Lighting
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