« Oh, this Chuck Lorre vanity card hits me where I live! | Main | Reports of new training video for Atlas crew »

January 06, 2014


This auto lamp technology sounds interesting. Wonder what the real advantages of it would be.

My wife's Honda has the auto dim mirror and I hate it. It does not dim nearly enough for my tastes. Also I do not like automatic climate control in a car. I want an old lever that controls how much hot water goes into the heater core and I want to control how much air the fan blows. I do not need the car to tell me how much I need or which vent it comes out of.

I am curious about these laser headlights. But do not really see the need. I like the heads up displays and collision avoidance that is showing up on some cars though. And I love backup cameras. I think these will save more small kids lives than many other required safety systems such as the trunk release handle.

Hattie--The "November article on optics.org" contains these two paragraphs:
"'From an optical engineering standpoint, a laser is the ideal high-luminance source," said BMW's Abdelmalek Hanafi, co-inventor of the system. "The energy surface is small, around 10 microns by 5 microns, [you probably don't even need to look it up to know that a micron is one-millionth of one meter] and the light can be focused into very small areas. The result can reach up to 3000 candela [a fire alarm strobe light emits about 75 candela - so - think of 40 strobe lights] per square millimeter; at least ten times better than LEDs.'"

"As applied by BMW, the new point-source is used to complement the performance of the existing high-power white pc-LED-based illumination modules. The LEDs generate the "background" in the intensity distribution pattern, while the high-luminance point source adds a hot-spot of collimated light at a greater distance, considerably increasing the driver's visibility range."

In addition, at the bottom of the article is a video put out by Audi demonstrating a small laser rear tail-light versus a modern tail-light.

Ingineer--I'm with you. Give me basic controls and I'll set them to suit myself. My 1982 Mazda 626 was perfect. It had "power - nothing" and basic controls for air conditioning/heating. My husband's car (he drives a 2013 Lincoln MKS, I drive a 2007 Lincoln MKZ) has all the displays and collision avoidance stuff. With the lack of rear-view access to the driver in modern cars (higher beltline in back to produce desirable aerodynamics), those rear-facing cameras/sensors are life savers! I'm not sure that the trunk release handles do much as I'm not sure that a small child would ever find/know to use one. In the olden days, the trunk was not locked automatically just because the trunk was closed - and - they were leaky enough that no one could ever have suffocated in one of those trunks.

The comments to this entry are closed.