Who can resist the opportunity to see the future?
When it comes to vehicle design, engineers and designers are pushing the boundaries of what’s possible with every part and feature – including how multiple functions can be seamlessly integrated into one part.
The future of on-vehicle lighting is starting to move beyond the established concept of one light/one function and fueling the development of new multi-function LED lighting options.
Vehicle Lighting Innovations Increase Visibility and Safety
For more than 130 years, vehicle lighting has been used to help drivers see – and be seen. Yet, many of today’s construction vehicle lighting systems still use conventional incandescent or halogen lights that diminish visibility and longevity.
Roughly a decade ago, LED headlights ushered in the next level of vehicle lighting technology. As the new standard for lighting performance and durability, LED lighting produces a much brighter, whiter light that increases driver visibility. On roadways or on the jobsite, powerful LED lighting illuminates areas delivering a safer environment for other vehicles and personnel.
LED lighting innovation continues to progress on every front to improve safety, even for vehicles operating in challenging winter conditions. Since LED lights generate minimal heat, sleet- and snow-covered lights can quickly diminish visibility and compromise safety.
Advancements in new LED lights include integrated lens heating technology that senses and automatically melts snow and ice from the lens surface. This intelligent thermal management technology provides maximum visibility to ensure safe vehicle operation.
Doing More with Less
Our increasingly data-driven world is creating new realities for operating and maintaining vehicles on tighter budgets. Maximizing efficiencies while making sure to get the latest technology with new vehicle purchases can be challenging.
LED vehicle lighting provides next-level durability by lasting up to 20 times longer than conventional halogen bulbs. Multi-functional LED headlights that are DOT (Dept. of Transportation) and ECE (Economic Commission for Europe)-compliant – along with IP67 and IP69K certification for optimal protection against water and other contaminants – will continue to deliver better lighting and improve safety in the most demanding jobsite conditions.
The simplicity of one LED headlight with multiple functions and enhanced durability provides a lower total cost of ownership. One example of this revolutionary technology delivers five critical lighting functions with the convenience of an all-in-one solution:
- Low Beam: Improved visibility to easily see up to 250-ft. ahead
- High Beam: Better visibility up to 500-ft. ahead for safer operation at higher speeds
- Daytime Running Lights: Additional visibility during daytime hours
- Front Position: Added illumination for enhanced visibility in all conditions
- Front Turn Signal Functions: Alert oncoming motorists to changes in direction
Regardless of classification, construction vehicles utilize multiple lights to facilitate safe operation – creating the need to source multiple lamp sizes to keep up with replacements. Combining the functionality of more than one light reduces vehicle lighting failure points to increase uptime while minimizing parts and labor costs.
Achieving the longest range possible is a driving force for today’s EVs (electric vehicles). As vehicles start shifting to more electric or hybrid power, multi-function headlights can help improve EV efficiencies and maximize performance.
Simple math confirms that multiple lights ultimately create a greater draw on an EV battery and incorporating a single, multi-functional LED headlight will reduce the pull on the battery. While this energy savings may seem minimal, it can have a positive impact on increasing operating ranges to deliver greater long-term value.
By Gary Durian, engineering director for Technical Solutions at J.W. Speaker.