Car Headlamps: Understanding the Functions, Components, and Types
The car has various components to drive safely –lights are one of them. This component has an important role, especially in supporting low-light driving activities. Not only do they illuminate dark streets, but the lights also improve visibility when it's raining heavily to signal other drivers.
A car headlamp is a type of car light, but what is it, and what are the types and technology behind it? Find all of them in this article!
Definition of Car Headlamp
A car headlamp is mounted on the front of the car to illuminate roads. Because it is on the front, it is often called a headlight. In addition, it is often called the headlight -although it is more suitable to call it a headlamp. Meanwhile, the headlight explains more about the beam of light.
Differences between Headlamps and Car Fog Lamps
The headlamp is the car's main light in front and is usually the largest. The point is to illuminate the road in front of the car at a long distance.
Fog lamps are also located in front and usually at the back, under the bumper. The purpose of the fog lamp is to illuminate the road when conditions are foggy, especially roads not far from the car.
Car Headlamp Function
The primary function of a car headlamp is to emit light to the front of the car so that the driver can drive more safely. The main headlamp will be helpful in dark lighting conditions when driving, for example, at night or when conditions are foggy, so that vision is impaired, which can endanger the driver.
Car Headlamp Components
Car headlamps have various components, namely:
- Battery, which functions as a battery that supplies electricity as car lighting energy
- A series of wires to carry electricity from the battery to the lamp.
- Fuse to secure the electrical system.
- Main switch to disconnect/connect the electric current.
- Combination switch to turn off and turn on the lights.
- Relay to secure the combination switch.
- Low beam lights, lights with electric power ranging from 50 W - 90 W for short distance lights.
- High beam lights with a power range from 60 W - 100 W for long-distance lights.
Variety of Car Headlamp Technologies
Newer cars are usually equipped with LED technology, with white and bright light. But besides that, there are other newer technologies, including:
- Matrix LED: uses a matrix pattern capable of emitting light with changes. This technology uses a camera system to monitor the street in front of it.
- Adaptive Headlight: a technology feature commonly used in LED lights. The advantage is that it is very adaptive in adjusting the lighting according to the car's road surface.
- Laser: the latest technology that is much brighter than the previous type of lamp. The lighting is very far, up to 600 m.
Types of Car Headlamps
As a street light, the light intensity of a car's headlamp varies depending on the type of lamp. There are several types of car headlamps, including:
1. Halogen Lamp
Halogen headlights contain a thin tungsten filament surrounded by halogen gas. The lamp is made in a highly durable glass filament, even at high temperatures. The shape is like a filament bulb lamp typically used before halogen. The only difference is that these lamps use halogen gases such as bromide and iodide.
Halogen bulbs are also very similar to electric bulbs used for household purposes. An ordinary light bulb uses a wire filament that heats up and emits light. Meanwhile, halogen lamps use halogen lamps to increase the brightness level.
HID, or High-Intensity Discharge, is a lamp that produces light by releasing electric gas by utilizing an electric arc. It is located between the tungsten electrodes and the transparent tubes.
HID lamps are often also referred to as xenon lamps. Instead of using a filament like halogen lamps, HID produces light by igniting xenon gas. HID light intensity is brighter than halogen lamps.
LED is the type of lamp that is currently the most widely used, not only for cars and vehicles but for various daily needs. LED lights are known for their very bright and clear light. An abbreviation of the word Light Emitting Diodes, LEDs are touted as the brightest lights at this time.
The LED lighting technique uses a simple semiconductor technology through which a current is passed, after which the light will emit from it. The current in a semiconductor flows in one direction only.
One of the advantages of LED is that it is more energy efficient because the energy taken from the battery is only a little compared to halogen and xenon lamps. Because many of the newest cars today use LED headlamp models.
The compact SUV Wuling Alvez, launched some time ago at the 2023 Indonesia International Motor Show, is equipped with LED headlamp model. This car has the best LED DRL headlamps. Apart from providing maximum and safe lighting while driving, the placement of LED lights in Wuling Alvez makes it look more modern and stylish.
Matrix lamps are a more advanced technology than LEDs. The matrix lamp consists of several smaller LED lights that work together in one headlamp. All of these smaller LEDs are controlled independently. Matrix lights are often referred to as smart lights.
The use of lasers is the latest technology in the automotive industry. A laser headlamp consists of one or more laser diodes built into it. The diodes emit a blue laser and then fire it at the yellow phosphor, similar to the process in a white LED light.
The white light produced by the laser lamp is powerful and bright. This light is then reflected from the reflector out of the headlights towards the front of the car. Laser headlamp lights can reach 600 m in front of the car, two times farther than conventional LED lights.
The above is a complete description of car headlamp functions for your car. In general, the headlamp functions to illuminate the road when driving at night and improves the driver's visibility when it is foggy. That's why this component needs to work properly.