Ford has presented a new predictive headlight technology that will equip all its future models for its customers to stay safe when driving in the dark.
The main difference to similar systems by other manufacturers is that the headlights won’t turn based on the wheel’s direction. Instead, it relies on the GPS to “see” what curve is coming up next and rotate in the right direction even before the wheel is turned. In a sense, it is like showing the drivers which way to go in the dark.
If, for whatever reason, the GPS signal is lost or unavailable, the system will turn to use the in-vehicle camera and also information about the steering position to maintain a large portion of its intelligence.
Because testing this system would require thousands of hours driving in the dark, Ford has teamed up with Ansys and used the ‘Avxcelerate Headlamp Simulation’ solution to accelerate the development process.
Thanks to this partnership, Ford was able to test its new smart headlight system and assess how it works on multiple vehicles and ranging weather conditions and road morphology scenarios. Avxcelerate Headlamp also supports testing scenarios that involve traffic, urban or rural settings, crossroads, takeovers, obstructions in the roadway, and more.
The software can even consider AEB (Autonomous Emergency Braking) and LSS (Lane Support Systems) systems and their response in various situations to assess all intelligent systems in one virtual testing setting.
In what concerns compliance with regulations such as the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) standards, Ansys can help determine light glare and distribution patterns, helping engineers optimize for maximum comfort, safety, and compliance.
Ultimately, simulation tools make innovative next-gen systems like this one faster to mature from concepts to ready products. In this particular case, we can say that simulation helps save lives by reducing accidents.