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Proceedings Paper

Headlamps for light based driver assistance
Author(s): M. Götz; M. Kleinkes
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Paper Abstract

Driving at night is dangerous. Although only 25% of all driving tasks are performed at night, nearly half of all fatal accidents happen in this time. In order to increase safety when driving under poor visibility conditions, automotive front lighting systems have undergone a strong development in the last fifteen years. One important milestone was the introduction of Xenon headlamps in 1992, which provide more and brighter light for road illumination than ever before. Since then the paradigm of simply providing more light has changed toward providing optimised light distributions, which support the driver's perception. A first step in this direction was the introduction of dynamic bend lighting and cornering light in 2003. In 2006 the first full AFS headlamp (Adaptive Front Lighting System) allowed an optimised adoption of the light distribution to the driving situation. These systems use information provided by vehicle sensors and an intelligent algorithm to guide light towards those areas where needed. Nowadays, even more information about the vehicle's environment is available. Image processing systems, for example, allow to detect other traffic participants, their speed and their driving directions. In future headlamp systems these data will be used to constantly regulate the reach of the light distribution thus allowing a maximal reach without providing glare. Moreover, technologies that allow to constantly use a high-beam light distribution are under development. These systems will illuminate the whole traffic area only excluding other traffic participants. LED light sources will play a significant role in these scenarios, since they allow to precisely illuminate certain areas of the road, while neighbouring parts will be left in dark.

Paper Details

Date Published: 28 April 2008
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 7003, Optical Sensors 2008, 70032B (28 April 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.781032
Show Author Affiliations
M. Götz, Hella KGaA Hueck & Co. (Germany)
M. Kleinkes, Hella KGaA Hueck & Co. (Germany)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7003:
Optical Sensors 2008
Francis Berghmans; Anna Grazia Mignani; Antonello Cutolo; Patrick P. Meyrueis; Thomas P. Pearsall, Editor(s)

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