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LEDs are the future

Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) have become an important part of the lighting system of the car. The LEDs have an almost endless lifespan and failure preservation due to the large number of light-emitting diodes. Further, they leave a great deal of freedom to the designer for the shape of the lighting system and its integration into the car body. Also the colour can be adapted more easily. Maybe there is in the future a different basic colour of the LEDs according to the vehicle colour of each car. LEDs in the front headlight are especially interesting. Their high efficiency comes in as an additional advantage.

Possibility for divisible light and indications

Incredibly many light-emitting diodes, perhaps with single reflectors, are united, e.g., in one rear headlight or in two partial headlights. They appear flatter than the single bulbs with reflector. In addition, the single display areas are no longer strictly segmented. The turning indicator light may appear in the middle of the rear light and is surrounded by the light. If the turning indicator light is switched off, its surface can be added to the rear light. The same light-emitting diode can deliver light in different colours. In addition, this technique enables a first step to a braking light that lights up according to the strength of the braking power, more or less strongly, or even blinking.

Transporting a bulky load that causes an open tailgate, but, nevertheless, the rear headlights should be visible? LEDs are helpful, because essential parts of the rear headlight may be integrated in the vehicle as well as in the tailgate and, in addition, the tailgate portion is still visible with half-open tailgate.

In 2008 LEDs will be introduced in the headlight

For countries demanding a stronger light density the number of LEDs can be increased keeping the same luminous surface. This is often a problem, because vehicles have to be equipped with additional luminous surfaces due to such regulations - although it is often undesirable in terms of design. LED headlights can be combined in one luminous unit with glow headlights and halogen lamps, probably handy for the transition period. But soon LEDs will dominate, because its advantages are very evident.

LEDs increase the light density, in spite that they use less energy as compared even to xenon headlights. The light colour is measured in Kelvin according to the temperature of a comparative emitter. Halogen light has approx. 3000 Kelvin, xenon 4000 Kelvin and the light-emitting diode technology has approx. 6000 Kelvin. Already at approximately 5000 Kelvin the resemblance to the daylight is reached.

Dimmable LEDs in front with single lenses

We must slowly get used to headlights with clearly more than one luminous source. It is possible to have 6 dimmed lenses for the low beam and 3 for the high beam which can be aligned individually, receiving a steadily illuminated front light. If recognition optics is added, e.g., a camera, the luminous emphasize of a specific feature will be possible by changing the dimming of a LED cluster. Upper class vehicles are equipped with turning lights that operate up to 40 km/h. It is even possible to equip a car with it afterwards. Making driving in curves safer, the lighted area may be doubled. In any case, besides the energy saving effect, a lot of other features may be expected from the LED-light technique.