Luminous fiber opens application options in automotive, industry and wearables

November 27, 2017 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Ambient lighting is increasingly available as an option for automotive interiors. With radial light distribution over the entire length of the fiber, the AmbientFiber optical fiber from Leoni AG offers an advantage over selective LED lighting. Plus, the product is more versatile than available solutions, claims Leoni.

In the automotive industry, the solution is suitable for interior and exterior lighting in the vehicle as well as on the inside of the doors, in the vehicle interior and on the center console. Due to the homogeneous light distribution and the different colors and color gradients, dark areas within the passenger compartment can be illuminated. In an appealing design, the lighting effects can be used to accentuate the vehicle brand.

Due to the functional integration of position sensors in the areas of the cable harness, the status of the seat belt can also be read off - this is detected by a locking switch, a contactless sensor. In dangerous situations, a red warning light signals to the driver that he has to fasten his seat belt while the normal ambient light indicates optimum safety.

The applications possibilities of the new optical fiber are extremely versatile: for example, it is ideally suited as an illumination for bicycles, greatly enhancing their active safety. Likewise, it is suited for interior and emergency exit lighting in aircraft, ships and trains, in the field of "Automation & Drives" as a visual feedback system or for lighting buildings in the field of architecture and infrastructure. In addition, Leoni’s AmbientFiber is also suitable for illuminating cables of electrical devices or charging cables, for example. Interesting product developments are also conceivable in the field of so-called wearables, i. e. intelligent textiles or accessories, such as luminous high-visibility vests or shoes. In conjunction with the smallest sensors, AmbientFiber is also able to detect changes in temperature, pressure or humidity.

The core of the optical fiber is made of quartz glass, which prevents discoloring effects or undesired reactions to sunlight - darkening effects can thus be ruled out. Different fiber cross-sections enable optimum bending and lighting quality. The size of the fiber core diameter also allows the intensity of the lighting effect to be individually adjusted: small fiber core