Audi Introduces Lighting Technology at 2013 CES

During the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Audi will be showcasing a host of new technologies including new lighting technology that manages to make vehicle lighting interesting.

One of the most under-appreciated aspects of a car’s design could be the lights. If they look good, most people will see a sexy car, but if they aren’t done right, car companies have to brace themselves for the complaints to start rolling in. The German luxury already takes a radical approach to its light design, but Audi is taking things a lot further this year. The most intriguing of their light concepts is probably OLEDs.

Instead of emitting light by sending an electric charge through a crystal like a normal LED light, OLEDs use an organic material – the “O” stand for organic – to illuminate a surface. LEDs are small compared to light bulbs and OLEDs continue that trend by offering lighting that is only millimeters thick.

One applications that Audi is showcasing during this year’s CES is something called the “swarm.” The German automakers engineers transformed the rear of a car into a large continuous light surface to let light flow across the car’s tail like a swarm of bees, or school of fish. For example, the light can shift to the right when the driver activated the turn signal.

“Laser tail lights” are another feature Audi brought this year.Cars that had this technology would project a line on the ground behind the car to prompt following cars to maintain a safe distance.