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Laser Beams And Vehicle Headlamp Technology

High Resolution Lenses for machine vision, instrumentation, inspection and vibration-sensitive applications. Standard and custom hi-res lens assemblies.

LED headlamps were, at one time and for the most part still are, the newest technology to hit the streets. It’s also likely that you have seen the Superhero that uses his laser vision to disintegrate buildings as a way to save the heroine, right? Did you know that laser beam technology is no longer a thing of movie legend but is moving into the vehicle headlamp realm and beginning to overtake LED headlamp as the technology of choice? German auto manufacturer, Mercedes Benz, is incorporating laser technology into its headlamps in the form of laser-beam projectors that will illuminate the road. The technology doesn’t stop there, though. The laser-beam projectors will also be able to be used to project pictures, movies and other visual media onto nearby walls. In addition, the lights also have the capability to project navigational directions onto the road itself as a way to guide the driver to his destination.

Auto manufacturers believe that laser lights are the “next logical step in car light development.” The reasons for embracing the technology are myriad and include the fact that lasers are more efficient, more powerful and smaller than other types of headlamps. The laser headlamps also provide near parallel beams of light that are close to 1,000 more intense than conventional LEDs, but use fewer than 170 lumens of output per watt; LEDs use 100 lumens per watt but emit a lower level light.

Laser diodes that are being used in vehicle headlamps are only 10 microns long; compare that to LEDs, which are close to 100 times larger. In theory, it is possible to design a vehicle with a tiny headlamp socket, allowing for the rest of the vehicle design to flow more smoothly from hood to side body. Some automakers, such as BMW, though, say that regardless of the smaller size, it still plans to retain its unique form and design and styling.

Laser headlamps are also safe and “pleasant to the eye”, a plus for oncoming vehicle traffic. The blue hue of the laser beam is converted through the use of a fluorescent phosphor material and will be reflected out as a pure, white beam.

Headlamp technology has evolved from yellow-hued tungsten headlamps to quartz to high-intensity discharge headlamps to LED and now to the newest technology, laser beams.

Universe Optics provides standard and custom lens assemblies for scanners, CCTV, CCD/CMOS, medical imaging, surveillance systems, machine vision and night vision systems.