In the car lighting system, car taillights mainly play an important role in lighting and signal indication, including width indicator lights, brake lights, rear turn signals, rear fog lights and other components. With the development and popularization of LED and even OLED technology, the function of automobile taillights has gradually extended from lighting and indication to the height of design aesthetics and brand symbols.
If you simply look at the design style of the light group, the recognition of the car taillights is even higher than that of the headlights. Since they don't need to take on too much road lighting, the car taillights can have flexible design and play space. Especially when automobiles are becoming more electrified and intelligent, automobile taillights need to carry more functions and be endowed with more meanings.
Many people have noticed that LED light sources appeared on automobile taillights very early, even far earlier than headlights. The main reason is that the lighting functions and working conditions responsible for the headlights are more diverse and complex, and have higher requirements for the color and penetration of the light source. At the earliest stage when LED light sources entered the automotive market, this kind of light-emitting diodes could not produce white light sources, so they could not meet the basic needs of vehicles for lighting at night and on roads with low visibility.
But even so, LED can still play its advantages in cars. Compared with halogen bulbs, LEDs have better energy-saving effects and lower costs. At present, the daytime running lights that are almost standard equipment mainly use LED lighting, and their energy consumption is only one-twentieth of that of halogen headlights. In addition, LED headlights can further reduce the cost of the car because of their long life and good durability. Assuming that the life cycle of a car is 11 years, then the components of the LED light set can be replaced throughout the cycle. Need to be replaced.
However, at the beginning of the application of LED technology, these were not the most valued points. Automobile designers would like to thank the arrival of LED light sources, more because of the smaller size of LED components, which can flexibly arrange lamp groups of different shapes and lines, breaking the shackles of traditional light sources on the design of taillights in the past.
Take Cadillac, which was the first to use LED taillights, as an example. The in-line taillights are the most recognizable design style of this brand. In consideration of safety, the lamp group cannot be arranged in the trunk part, so there is only a small space at the rear of the car to stuff the complex taillight assembly, especially the in-line layout. LED technology solved the difficulties of Cadillac designers. In the subsequent design iterations for more than ten years, we will find that Cadillac's in-line taillights are smaller, more slender, and the brightness of the lights is also higher.
The same situation also appears on the penetrating taillights. It is generally believed that the design concept of through-type taillights originated from American cars. American brands’ pursuit of exaggerated car shapes also requires lighting to present them. For example, when Lincoln Continental was updated to the fourth-generation model in the 1960s, the entire American society at that time liked muscle lines. Partially add more lines that show strength, and it is also necessary to add flat taillights that run through the left and right at the rear, so that the sense of volume of a car can be better displayed.
This can be understood as the earliest through-type taillights, including Toyota Crown and Mercedes-Benz S-Class, which are trying to make semi-connected taillights. Until the LED light source enters the automotive field, the design of through-type taillights can be brought to the extreme.
The popularization of penetrating tail lights and the development of LED technology complement each other. The LED light source is composed of many small illuminants, which determines that the car taillights can have more combinations. For example, a through-type taillight can be composed of 200-300 LED lamp beads, and such an LED taillight assembly already includes all functions such as width indicator lights, brake lights, and turn signals. The system can individually control the functions of each light group. At the same time, the volume of taillights can be as compact as possible.
Since the lighting speed of the LED light source is extremely fast and is calculated at the microsecond level, this light source also improves the functionality of the taillights of the car, such as the response speed of the corresponding light groups for steering and braking, which is ultimately to improve driving safety. .
The arrival of OLED
At the end of the last century, LED technology entered the automotive industry, which brought more feasibility to automotive lighting design, and also improved safety and stability. However, LED still has its limitations as a point light source. For example, although its light has better penetration, it will also be dazzling and dazzling to pedestrians and other vehicle occupants.
How to find a better balance between lighting brightness, lighting effect and safety, the new technology of OLED has become a breakthrough. OLED is an organic semiconductor lighting technology. As a flat light source, OLED can emit more uniform and soft light, and because this light element is thinner and more flexible, it does not need to be heated due to its non-heating characteristics. Heat dissipation and light guide structure, so the volume and thickness can be further reduced, and the design is more plastic.
We can understand this kind of flexible OLED lighting as a piece of paper, which can better fit the curved shape of the car when used on the taillights. At the same time, the size of OLED is more compact than LED, which provides car manufacturers with more advantages in tail design. more innovative ideas.
In the field of mass-produced vehicles, one of the best solutions for using OLED technology is the Audi A8. OLED technology not only enables the penetrating taillights of the Audi A8 to automatically adjust the darkness under more uniform light, reducing the glare to other vehicles or pedestrians. At the same time, the different color light sources of the turn signals and brake lights can be switched freely and quickly. These two functions are integrated into a more compact and more stylish OLED taillight assembly.
The OLED technology used in the Buick Enspire concept car also provides ideas for taillight light source interaction, such as communicating with the rear vehicle through the speed of the taillight flashing speed, so as to prepare for steering or braking.
In fact, with the accelerated entry of OLED technology into the automotive field, luxury car companies are the first to propose a variety of OLED light source design solutions. In addition to penetrating and interactive taillights, OLED can also be a car brand to strengthen the design symbol, even in automatic lighting. Driving Age provides the basis for graphic communication.
The matrix taillight based on the evolution of OLED technology is one of the cases. Different from the requirement of matrix headlights for lighting partitions, matrix taillights are more used for functional indications other than lighting. Through separate control of multiple independent light areas, more diverse and specific driving signals can be provided to vehicles behind. , with dual considerations of design and safety, and also in line with the development direction of future automotive intelligence.
The development of lighting technology has endowed automobile tail lights with more design ideas and directions, allowing them to bring more surprises beyond their functions.