Members of the foundation (Audi, BMW, Daimler, Opel, AL, Hella, Odelo, Valeo, Zizala, Philips and Osram) meet at least annually to discuss the research results of the past year and hold counsel for the current period.
The members thereby form an avant-garde of the lighting automotive lighting industry. The latest trends can be discussed informally and without restraints.
This is a good possibility for all members to bundle their efforts towards new regulative standards which enable new safety systems including advanced adaptive lighting systems.
Research that has been conducted here combined with the good cooperation of the Darmstadt Laboratory of Lighting technology with German and international regulative and legislative bodies has in the past let to many enhancements of restrictive legislation.
Influence on research topics
Examples are the extensive studies on physiological phenomena like flickering induced by pulse width modulated LED
signaling devices, impartial testing and benchmarking of new LED headlighting systems, testing of new HID light sources or glare assessment of new lighting solutions under conditions of practical relevance.
LED head light benchmarking.
To establish whether current LED head lights (series and prototypes) were equally powerful as halogen and HID type of head lights, the laboratory conducted extensive tests with test drives in real traffic conditions and glare experiments on the University’s automotive testing course.
The tests were conducted in favorable and adverse weather conditions and the results were again published within the foundation community.
The Laboratory received a lot of remarks on the good performance of LED head lights in real traffic situations concerning the visibility of road markings and other retro-reflective materials. This is surprising given the comparatively low luminous flux of current LED head lights.
The laboratory therefore conducted an extensive assessment of the performance of different light sources under mesopic conditions. The different light sources were compared to a given test stimulus with a certain luminance. The results indicate that LEDs are perceived brighter than Xenon light sources by older subjects, perhaps due to their higher blue content. The outcome of the experiments could be one explanation or the high brightness of road marking elements under LED illumination.
Field tests for comparing halogen & HID headlamps
Vehicles available with both halogen and HID headlamps (Opel, Audi, Mercedes) were tested to examine the comparison of lighting and physiological parameters: visibility distance and discomfort glare.
All cars’ headlamps were correctly aimed, and it was found that Xenon headlamps delivered much less discomfort glare and more visibility distances than halogen tungsten headlamps. The results were published in the German journal for “Traffic safety” in German and in early 2009 in the well-known automotive journal “ATZ” in German and English for worldwide study.
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