This past week, 125 lighting experts came together near Detroit in Rochester, Michigan to present and exchange ideas under the rubric of h ow and when LED technology will impact the U.S. automotive market. Attendees shared the perspectives and voices of academic researchers, regulators, technical standards developers, and practitioners from virtually every sector of the industry.
NHTSA’s participation was an especial highlight, as we got a clearer idea of how to make our regulatory needs and priorities clear to their swamped agency—how to help them help us. More than 50 companies were represented including GM, Ford, Chrysler, Toyota, Nissan, Honda, Hyundai-Kia, Audi, Opel, and VW. The 36 main Tier-1 and -2 lighting suppliers involved in the U.S. market were there, as were researchers from UMTRI and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s Lighting Research Center. Valuable and important insights were contributed by the Presidents of GRE, and GTB.
Valeo-Sylvania chief Jerry Dittrich opened the workshop, just ahead of the series of eight lectures. Alan Barlow and Dirk Vanderhaeghen started the lectures with Osram’s and Philips’ views on the trends of LEDs regarding volume, efficiency and cost. Wolfgang Huhn and Rainer Neuman presented with their usual charisma the status of LED technologies from a German standpoint, and DVN newcomers Mike Larsen (GM), Mahendra Dassanayake (Ford), and John Orisich (Valeo-Sylvania) presented US needs and achievements concerning LEDs. Ernst-Olaf Rosenhahn emphasized the influence of LEDs on energy consumption, then UMTRI’s Michael Flannagan and RPI-LRC’s John Bullough teamed up for a fantastic presentation on the safety potential of various automotive lighting technologies. This first half of the workshop was interesting and fruitful.
Following a delicious lunch buzzing with topical discussion, the second half of the workshop got underway: four panel discussions chaired by experts Ingolf Schneider, Kamislav Fadel, Thorsten Warwel, and Dennis Nowack. There was enthusiastic exchange among the panelists and between the panels and the audience. Topics included regulations, standardisation, limiting factors, and challenges.
All of us were able to exchange our experience, desires, and ideas among American, Japanese, Korean, and European participants on LED technologies for automotive lighting. We admired the strengths and acknowledged the weaknesses of LED vehicle lighting, and cooperated to plan the ways ahead to enhance the benefits and address the drawbacks.
Two mails received few hours after the workshop summarise the feedback:
“Thank you for organizing the DVN workshop in Rochester, it was a great success and I was pleased that I could participate. I received feedback from my U.S. colleagues as well as many other U.S. attendees that the meeting was a success. I am sure many people told you this after the workshop, but I wanted to pass this feedback along as well.”
“By all accounts, your conference was a success. Everyone I have spoken with was impressed by the participation and the open discussion. The participation by representatives of the government and the regulatory agencies was especially significant.”
The entire DVN team is delighted with what appears to be a decidedly positive long-run contribution to the state of communication in the automotive lighting world, and we’re definitely going to do it again. Thanks to all who participated!
DVN General editor