EP1357334B1 - Elliptical lighting module without screen providing a cut-off beam and headlamp comprising the same - Google Patents

Elliptical lighting module without screen providing a cut-off beam and headlamp comprising the same Download PDF

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Publication number
EP1357334B1
EP1357334B1 EP03290971A EP03290971A EP1357334B1 EP 1357334 B1 EP1357334 B1 EP 1357334B1 EP 03290971 A EP03290971 A EP 03290971A EP 03290971 A EP03290971 A EP 03290971A EP 1357334 B1 EP1357334 B1 EP 1357334B1
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EP
European Patent Office
Prior art keywords
reflector
lighting
cut
flat surface
lighting module
Prior art date
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Active
Application number
EP03290971A
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German (de)
French (fr)
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EP1357334A1 (en
EP1357334B2 (en
Inventor
Pierre Albou
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Valeo Vision SA
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Valeo Vision SA
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Publication date
Family has litigation
Priority to FR0205323 priority Critical
Priority to FR0205323A priority patent/FR2839139B1/en
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Publication of EP1357334B2 publication Critical patent/EP1357334B2/en
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Classifications

    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21VFUNCTIONAL FEATURES OR DETAILS OF LIGHTING DEVICES OR SYSTEMS THEREOF; STRUCTURAL COMBINATIONS OF LIGHTING DEVICES WITH OTHER ARTICLES, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F21V13/00Producing particular characteristics or distribution of the light emitted by means of a combination of elements specified in two or more of main groups F21V1/00 - F21V11/00
    • F21V13/02Combinations of only two kinds of elements
    • F21V13/04Combinations of only two kinds of elements the elements being reflectors and refractors
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21SNON-PORTABLE LIGHTING DEVICES; SYSTEMS THEREOF; VEHICLE LIGHTING DEVICES SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLE EXTERIORS
    • F21S41/00Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps
    • F21S41/10Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps characterised by the light source
    • F21S41/14Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps characterised by the light source characterised by the type of light source
    • F21S41/141Light emitting diodes [LED]
    • F21S41/147Light emitting diodes [LED] the main emission direction of the LED being angled to the optical axis of the illuminating device
    • F21S41/148Light emitting diodes [LED] the main emission direction of the LED being angled to the optical axis of the illuminating device the main emission direction of the LED being perpendicular to the optical axis
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21SNON-PORTABLE LIGHTING DEVICES; SYSTEMS THEREOF; VEHICLE LIGHTING DEVICES SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLE EXTERIORS
    • F21S41/00Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps
    • F21S41/20Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps characterised by refractors, transparent cover plates, light guides or filters
    • F21S41/24Light guides
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21SNON-PORTABLE LIGHTING DEVICES; SYSTEMS THEREOF; VEHICLE LIGHTING DEVICES SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLE EXTERIORS
    • F21S41/00Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps
    • F21S41/20Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps characterised by refractors, transparent cover plates, light guides or filters
    • F21S41/25Projection lenses
    • F21S41/255Lenses with a front view of circular or truncated circular outline
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21SNON-PORTABLE LIGHTING DEVICES; SYSTEMS THEREOF; VEHICLE LIGHTING DEVICES SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLE EXTERIORS
    • F21S41/00Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps
    • F21S41/30Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps characterised by reflectors
    • F21S41/32Optical layout thereof
    • F21S41/321Optical layout thereof the reflector being a surface of revolution or a planar surface, e.g. truncated
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21SNON-PORTABLE LIGHTING DEVICES; SYSTEMS THEREOF; VEHICLE LIGHTING DEVICES SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLE EXTERIORS
    • F21S41/00Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps
    • F21S41/30Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps characterised by reflectors
    • F21S41/32Optical layout thereof
    • F21S41/36Combinations of two or more separate reflectors
    • F21S41/365Combinations of two or more separate reflectors successively reflecting the light
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21SNON-PORTABLE LIGHTING DEVICES; SYSTEMS THEREOF; VEHICLE LIGHTING DEVICES SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLE EXTERIORS
    • F21S41/00Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps
    • F21S41/40Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps characterised by screens, non-reflecting members, light-shielding members or fixed shades
    • F21S41/43Illuminating devices specially adapted for vehicle exteriors, e.g. headlamps characterised by screens, non-reflecting members, light-shielding members or fixed shades characterised by the shape thereof
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21VFUNCTIONAL FEATURES OR DETAILS OF LIGHTING DEVICES OR SYSTEMS THEREOF; STRUCTURAL COMBINATIONS OF LIGHTING DEVICES WITH OTHER ARTICLES, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F21V7/00Reflectors for light sources
    • F21V7/04Optical design
    • F21V7/08Optical design with elliptical curvature
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21VFUNCTIONAL FEATURES OR DETAILS OF LIGHTING DEVICES OR SYSTEMS THEREOF; STRUCTURAL COMBINATIONS OF LIGHTING DEVICES WITH OTHER ARTICLES, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F21V7/00Reflectors for light sources
    • F21V7/0008Reflectors for light sources providing for indirect lighting
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21YINDEXING SCHEME ASSOCIATED WITH SUBCLASSES F21K, F21L, F21S and F21V, RELATING TO THE FORM OR THE KIND OF THE LIGHT SOURCES OR OF THE COLOUR OF THE LIGHT EMITTED
    • F21Y2115/00Light-generating elements of semiconductor light sources
    • F21Y2115/10Light-emitting diodes [LED]

Description

  • The present invention relates to a lighting module and a lighting projector for a motor vehicle.
  • The present invention more particularly relates to a lighting module for a motor vehicle headlight producing a cut-off type of lighting beam, comprising, arranged from rear to front globally along a longitudinal horizontal optical axis, an elliptical type reflector which defines a reflection volume for light rays and which has a substantially elliptical reflection surface, at least one light source which is arranged in the vicinity of a first focus of the reflector, and a convergent lens whose focal plane is arranged in the vicinity of second focus of the reflector.
  • Elliptical type projectors, or projectors with optical image reproduction, are well known, especially for producing a cut-off lighting beam.
  • By cut-off lighting beam is meant a lighting beam that has a directional limit, or cutoff, above which the light intensity emitted is low.
  • The dipped beam and fog lamp functions are examples of cut-off light beams in accordance with current European legislation.
  • Generally, in an elliptical projector, the cut is made by means of a cover, which is formed of a vertical plate of suitable profile, which is interposed axially between the elliptical reflector and the convergent lens, and which is arranged in the vicinity of second focus of the reflector.
  • The cache makes it possible to mask the light rays coming from the light source and reflected by the reflector towards the lower part of the focal plane of the converging lens, and which would be, in the absence of a cover, emitted by the projector above the cut.
  • A disadvantage of this type of projector is that a significant portion of the light energy emitted by the source is dissipated in the rear face of the cache.
  • The document US-A-4,914,747 corresponding to the preamble of the main claim, discloses a projector whose reflector comprises upper and lower parts in the form of half-ellipsoids with the same optical axis, the second foci of which coincide, the first focus of the upper reflector being located in front of that of the reflector inferior. The projector comprises a lamp with two filaments, each arranged at one of the first focal points of the reflectors. A flat screen is arranged parallel to the optical axis of the reflectors, the front edge of this screen being disposed in the vicinity of the second foci, coinciding themselves with the focus of a converging lens.
  • The document EP-A-1,193,440 discloses a projector producing a cutoff type lighting beam, comprising a semi-elliptical reflector, a light source arranged in the vicinity of the first focus of the reflector, a converging lens whose focal plane is arranged in the vicinity of the second focus of the reflector, and a horizontal planar reflective surface, the upper surface of which is reflective, the planar surface has a leading end edge which is arranged in the vicinity of the second focus of the reflector, so as to form the cut-off in the illumination beam. the planar surface is pivotally mounted around its trailing edge so as to form a passing beam when it is parallel to the optical axis, and a driving beam when tilted.
  • The invention proposes a lighting module for a motor vehicle headlamp producing a cut-off type lighting beam, comprising, arranged from back to front, generally along a longitudinal horizontal optical axis, an elliptical-type reflector which delimits a reflection volume for light rays and having a substantially elliptical reflection surface, at least one light source which is arranged in the vicinity of a first focus of the reflector, and a lens convergent lens whose focal plane is arranged in the vicinity of the second focus of the reflector, the reflector having a horizontal plane reflective surface, the upper surface of which is reflecting, which defines vertically downwardly the reflection volume, the plane surface of the reflector comprising a front end edge, said cutting edge, which is arranged in the vicinity of the second focus of the reflector, so as to form the cut in the lighting beam, the flat surface of the reflector being arranged in a horizontal plane passing generally by the focal points of the reflector.
  • According to the present invention, the planar surface of the reflector extends longitudinally rearwards, from its cutting edge, at least to the vicinity of the first focus of the reflector, the substantially elliptical surface of the reflector is formed by an angular sector of substantially revolution-shaped piece, about the longitudinal optical axis, and in that this angular sector extends vertically above the plane surface of the reflector, the light source is a light-emitting diode, and is arranged in the module so that its light scattering axis is substantially perpendicular to the flat surface of the reflector.
  • With the lighting module according to the invention, the majority of the light flux emitted by the source is used in the light beam produced by the module, in order to perform the associated regulatory lighting function.
  • According to other features of the invention:
    • the reflector is made in one piece full of transparent material;
    • the lens is made in one piece with the reflector;
    • the light source is arranged in a complementary cavity formed in the flat surface of the reflector;
    • the lighting module comprises a plurality of adjacent light sources which are generally aligned in a substantially horizontal direction and perpendicular to the optical axis longitudinal, so as to spread in width the lighting beam;
    • the light source is a light emitting diode;
    • the light source is formed by the free end of a bundle of optical fibers;
    • the cutting edge of the flat surface of the reflector has a curved profile, in the horizontal plane, so as to follow the overall curvature of the focal plane of the lens;
    • the horizontal plane surface of the reflector extends in a first half-plane delimited by the longitudinal optical axis, a secondary plane surface of the reflector extends in a second half-plane delimited by the longitudinal optical axis, and the flat surface secondary comprises a front cut-off edge which is inclined, with respect to a horizontal plane, by a determined angle, so as to form an inclined cut in the lighting beam, with a view to producing a regulatory crossing beam ;
  • The invention also relates to a vehicle lighting projector, characterized in that it comprises at least one lighting module according to one of the preceding characteristics.
  • According to another characteristic of the lighting projector according to the invention, the latter being provided for producing a regulatory lighting beam crossover, it comprises at least two lighting modules, substantially identical structures, which are arranged substantially parallel :
    • a first lighting module whose cutoff edge is substantially horizontal;
    • and a second lighting module, which is rotated at a given angle about its optical axis, relative to the first module, so that its cutting edge is inclined with respect to a horizontal plane,
    so that the lighting beams produced by the two modules are superimposed and form the regulatory lighting beam crossing.
  • Other features and advantages of the invention will appear on reading the detailed description which follows for the understanding of which reference will be made to the appended drawings in which:
    • Figure 1 is a perspective view which schematically shows a first embodiment of the lighting module according to the invention;
    • Figure 2 is a top view which schematically shows the lighting module of Figure 1;
    • Fig. 3 is a side view which schematically illustrates the path of the light rays in the illumination module of Fig. 1;
    • Figure 4 is a view similar to that of Figure 1 which shows a second embodiment of the lighting module according to the invention;
    • Figure 5 is a view similar to that of Figure 1 which shows an alternative embodiment of the lighting module of Figure 1 comprising a plurality of light emitting diodes;
    • FIG. 6 is a front view which diagrammatically represents a vehicle lighting projector comprising lighting modules according to the invention and producing a regulatory lighting beam of crossing;
    • Figure 7 is a view similar to that of Figure 1 which shows schematically a lighting module producing a cut-off lighting beam corresponding to a dipped beam;
    • FIG. 8 is a front view showing the reflector of the lighting module of FIG. 7.
  • FIGS. 1 to 3 show schematically a lighting module 10 which is produced in accordance with the teachings of the invention.
  • In a conventional manner, the lighting module 10 comprises, arranged from rear to front along a longitudinal longitudinal optical axis AA, a reflector 12 of the elliptical type, a light source 14 which is arranged in the vicinity of a first focus F1 of the reflector 12, and a convergent lens 16 whose focal plane is arranged in the vicinity of the second focus F2 of the reflector 12.
  • The reflector 12 and the lens 16 form the optical system 11 of the lighting module 10.
  • The optical axis AA defines here, without limitation, a horizontal longitudinal direction and a back-to-front orientation, which corresponds to a left-to-right orientation in FIGS. 2 and 3. The optical axis AA is, for example substantially parallel to the longitudinal axis of a vehicle (not shown) equipped with the lighting module 10.
  • In the following description, without limitation, we use a vertical orientation that corresponds to a top-down orientation in Figure 3.
  • The convergent lens 16 is here a piece of revolution around the longitudinal optical axis A-A. The lens 16 has, vis-à-vis the reflector 12, a transverse input surface 17 for the light rays.
  • According to the embodiment shown here, the reflector 12 has an elliptical surface 18 which is formed as an angular sector substantially of revolution, and which extends in the half space above a plane horizontal axis passing through the longitudinal optical axis AA.
  • The inner face 20 of the elliptical surface 18 is reflective.
  • Note that the elliptical surface 18 may not be perfectly elliptical and may have several specific profiles provided to optimize the light distribution in the illumination beam produced by the module 10, according to the lighting function performed by the module 10. This implies that the reflector is not perfectly revolution.
  • According to the teachings of the invention, the reflector 12 comprises a horizontal flat surface 22 whose upper face 24 is reflective.
  • The reflector 12 defines a reflection volume for the light rays emitted by the source 14, that is to say a volume in which the light rays are emitted and in which the light rays are reflected. This reflection volume is delimited, in its upper part, by the internal reflection face 20 of the elliptical surface 18, and vertically downwards by the reflecting face 24 of the flat surface 22.
  • The flat surface 22 extends here in a horizontal axial plane.
  • The plane surface 22 is delimited, at the rear, at its intersection with the elliptical surface 18, by an elliptical edge 26, and at the front, by a front longitudinal end edge 28. It may be alternatively provided that the planar surface 22 is delimited at the rear by a line segment perpendicular to the axis AA and passing in the immediate vicinity of the source 14, in front of the latter.
  • The front end edge 28 of the flat surface 22 is arranged in the vicinity of the second focus F2 of the reflector 12, so as to form a sharp enough cut in the illumination beam produced by the lighting module 10.
  • In the remainder of the description, therefore, this front end edge 28 will be designated by "cutting edge 28".
  • The focal plane of the lens 16, in a horizontal plane passing through the focus F2 of the lens 16, forms a curved profile, concave forward. According to the embodiment, the curved shape of this profile is more or less complex, and can be compared in first approximation to an arc of a circle. Therefore, preferably, the cutoff edge 28 has a curved profile, in the horizontal plane, so as to follow generally the profile of the focal plane of the lens 16.
  • According to the embodiment shown here, the reflecting flat surface 22 comprises a semi-ellipsoidal rear section 30, which is delimited by the elliptical edge 26, and by the diameter 32 of the semi-circular front edge 34 of the elliptical surface 18.
  • The reflective flat surface 22 comprises a generally isosceles trapezoidal front section 36, which is delimited by the diameter 32 of the elliptical surface 18, by two lateral edges 38, 40, and by the cut-off edge 28.
  • According to the embodiment shown here, the transverse width of the front section 36 increases progressively forward, so that the transverse width of the cutting edge 28 is substantially equal to the diameter of the entrance surface of the lens 16.
  • According to an alternative embodiment (not shown) of the invention, the flat surface 22 may comprise only a front section 36, which extends axially rearwardly, from the cutting edge 28 to a predetermined point in the optical axis AA located between the first F1 and the second F2 focal points of the reflector 12.
  • Advantageously, the light source 14 is designed to emit its light energy in less than a "half space" above the plane surface 22, and to emit its light energy towards the inner face 20 of the elliptical surface 18.
  • Advantageously, the light source 14 is an encapsulated light-emitting diode 44.
  • Here, light-emitting diode 44 denotes the junction which produces the light energy as well as the globe or the light-diffusing capsule which envelops the upper part of the junction.
  • Conventionally, the light-emitting diode 44 is mounted on an electronic support plate 42, which is shown in FIG. 3, and which is arranged here parallel to the flat surface 22.
  • The light-emitting diode 44 has a light-scattering axis BB which is here substantially perpendicular to the flat surface 22.
  • The light emitting diode 44 emits its light energy in a solid angle generally centered about its light scattering axis B-B, and less than 180 degrees.
  • This arrangement allows the diode 44 to emit the majority of its light energy towards the inner face 20 of the elliptical surface 18.
  • The principle of operation of the lighting module 10 according to the invention is as follows.
  • It is assumed that the light source 14 is of small extent around a point coincident with the first focus F1 of the elliptical reflector 18.
  • In a first step, the light rays emitted by the light source 14 which pass above the cutting edge 28 and which will be designated by primary rays R1 are considered.
  • Since the light source 14 is arranged at the first focus F1 of the elliptical reflector 18, the majority of the primary rays R1 emitted by the source 14, after being reflected on the inner face 20 of the elliptical surface 18, is returned to the second F2 focus of the reflector 18, or in the vicinity thereof.
  • These primary light rays R1 form, at the focus F2 of the lens 16, a concentrated light image which is projected, at the front of the lighting module 10, by the lens 16, in a direction substantially parallel to the longitudinal axis AA .
  • In a second step, we consider the light rays R2 emitted by the source 14 which would pass below the cutoff edge 28, if there was no flat surface 22, and which will be designated by secondary rays R2.
  • These secondary light rays R2 are reflected by the inner face 20 of the elliptical surface 18 towards the reflecting flat surface 22, so that they are reflected a second time forward.
  • During this second reflection, the secondary light rays R2 are transmitted towards the upper part of the input surface 17 of the lens 16. Therefore, because of its properties of convergence, the lens 16 deflects the secondary light rays R2 downwards. The secondary light rays R2 are therefore emitted under the cut-off in the lighting beam.
  • More the reflection place on the plane surface 22 of a secondary light ray R2 is close to the cutoff edge 28, so close to the focal plane of the lens 16, plus the direction of this secondary light beam R2, at the exit of the lens 16, is close to a direction parallel to the longitudinal axis AA.
  • An advantage of the lighting module 10 according to the invention is that its optical system 11 does not obscure a significant portion of the light rays emitted by the source 14, as is the case in a conventional lighting module comprising a cache .
  • The reflecting flat surface 22 can "fold" the images of the light source 14 which are reflected by the elliptical surface 18 of the reflector 12 to the second focus F2 of the reflector 12.
  • Indeed, in the absence of the plane surface 22, some of these images should overlap the limit formed by the cutoff edge 28, in a vertical plane generated by the cutoff edge 28. Each image would then comprise an upper portion located at above the cut-off edge 28 and a lower portion below the cut-off edge 28. Thanks to the reflecting flat surface 22, the lower portion of each image is reflected upwards, as if the lower portion were folded over the upper portion, so that these image portions are superimposed above the cutoff edge 28, in the vertical plane generated by the cutoff edge 28.
  • The "fold" formed by this "folding" of images contributes to forming a clean cut in the light beam projected by the lens 16.
  • The lighting module 10 according to the invention also has particular advantages in the context of the use of a light emitting diode 44 as a light source 14 in a lighting module.
  • Indeed, the image of the virtual source corresponding to a diode is generally round and diffuse.
  • To make a cut in a lighting beam, from a lighting module using a light source and a Fresnel optic, or using a light source and a reflector of the complex surface type, it is necessary to align the edges of the images of the light source on the measurement screen used to validate the regulatory lighting beam.
  • When the light source is a filament, its virtual image has the overall shape of a rectangle, so that it is relatively easy to make a clean cut by aligning the edges of the rectangles.
  • When the light source is a diode, it is much more difficult to make a clean cut by aligning the corresponding images of round shapes.
  • This difficulty could be overcome by using a diaphragm with the diode, but then a significant amount of the light energy produced by the diode would be lost.
  • The lighting module 10 according to the invention makes it possible to make a clean cut with a diode 44, because it projects at the front the image of an edge of the optical system 11, that is to say the image of the edge cutoff 28.
  • The shape of the cut in the illumination beam is thus determined by the profile of the cut-off edge 28, in a projection on a vertical and transverse plane.
  • Another difficulty for the realization of a lighting module from a diode comes from the fact that the distribution of light energy in the light beam emitted by the diode is not homogeneous. Therefore, it is very difficult to achieve a homogeneous illumination beam from the direct images of the diode.
  • The lighting module 10 according to the invention overcomes this difficulty by exploiting a property of the elliptical lighting modules which is to "mix" the images of the light source at the second focus F2 of the reflector 12, which improves the homogeneity of the illumination beam produced.
  • An advantage of the lighting module 10 according to the invention is that it exploits the property of the encapsulated diodes 44 to emit globally in a half space, which captures more than eighty percent of the luminous flux emitted by the diode 44, whereas in a traditional code elliptical projector, less than fifty percent of the luminous flux is captured.
  • According to a first embodiment, which is shown diagrammatically in FIGS. 1 to 3, the lighting module 10 is made by an assembly of discrete elements.
  • The lighting module 10 comprises, for example, an element 18 forming the elliptical portion of the reflector 12, an element 22 forming the flat surface of the reflector 12, and an element 16 forming the convergent lens.
  • The inner face of the elliptical portion 18 and the upper face of the flat surface 22 are for example coated with a reflective material.
  • In the case where the light source 14 is a light-emitting diode 44, given the low heat dissipation of this type of source, compared to lamps, it is possible to produce the discrete elements in the form of polymer parts, assembled by example by interlocking.
  • The lens 16 may be a Fresnel lens.
  • According to a second embodiment of the invention, which is shown diagrammatically in FIG. 4, the optical system 11 of the lighting module 10 is made in one solid optical part, made of transparent material, for example PMMA (polymethacrylate). methyl).
  • The solid optical part is for example made by molding, or by machining.
  • To allow reflection of the light rays emitted by the source 14 in the reflection volume delimited by the reflector 12, the outer surface of the elliptical portion 18 of the reflector 12 and the outer surface, here below, of the flat surface 22 of the reflector 12 are coated with a reflective material.
  • For certain portions of the reflector 12, it is possible to use the total reflection properties in a medium of index greater than air to cause the reflection of the light rays in the reflection volume delimited by the reflector 12, without the use of reflective material.
  • According to this second embodiment, the light rays which are emitted by the light source 14 propagate inside the material constituting the optical system 11 of the lighting module 10, then they leave the optical system 11 through the front face of the light source. the convergent lens 16.
  • The fact that the light rays propagate inside a material, in the second embodiment, while the light rays propagate in the air, in the first embodiment, has no influence. notable on the principle of operation of the lighting module 10 according to the invention.
  • Advantageously, the reflecting flat surface 22 comprises a cavity of complementary shape to the capsule of the light-emitting diode 44.
  • For example, if the capsule of the diode 44 has a hemispherical shape, the cavity is substantially hemispherical.
  • According to a variant of this second embodiment, the reflector 12 is made in one piece of transparent material, which is distinct from the piece forming the convergent lens 16.
  • According to an alternative embodiment of the invention, which is represented in FIG. 5, the light source 14 can be made by means of several light-emitting diodes 44.
  • Note that the light-emitting diodes 44 must be very close to each other, so that they are arranged generally at the first focus F1 of the reflector 12.
  • For example, according to FIG. 5, two diodes 44 are aligned, advantageously in a direction perpendicular to the longitudinal optical axis A-A.
  • The resulting light source 14 is then equivalent to an extended light source width, since the light beams produced by each light emitting diode 44 overlap.
  • This arrangement of the diodes 44 thus makes it possible to widen the light beam produced by the lighting module 10.
  • Advantageously, to achieve a regulatory lighting function, cut-off, for example a fog light function, a vehicle headlight is produced by means of several identical lighting modules 10 operating simultaneously.
  • The lighting modules 10 are arranged in parallel, that is to say that their optical axes A-A are substantially parallel to each other.
  • Thus, the light beams produced by each of the lighting modules 10 are superimposed on the front of the vehicle so as to form the regulatory lighting beam cutoff.
  • For example, there is shown in Figure 6 a vehicle headlight 46 which performs a dipped beam function, or codes, and which uses four identical lighting modules 10.
  • As the crossing lighting beam must comprise a cutoff having a portion inclined at a given angle, for example fifteen degrees, two lighting modules 48 of the projector 46 are rotated by fifteen degrees, about their longitudinal optical axis AA, in such a way as to produce a lighting beam having an inclined cut of fifteen degrees with respect to a horizontal plane.
  • The other two lighting modules 50 form a lighting beam having a horizontal cut.
  • The superposition of the illumination beams produced by the four lighting modules 10 then forms a regulatory lighting beam having a horizontal portion and an inclined portion of fifteen degrees.
  • According to an alternative embodiment of the invention, which is shown in FIGS. 7 and 8, each lighting module 10 may be provided to individually produce a lighting beam comprising a cut-off according to a regulatory beam of dipped beam.
  • According to this variant, the reflecting flat surface 22 comprises two parts 52, 54.
  • A first part of the reflecting surface 22 extends in a first half-plane 52 delimited by the longitudinal optical axis A-A, and which extends to the right in FIG. 8.
  • This first half-plane 52 is contained in the horizontal plane. Its cutoff edge 56 is therefore horizontal, so that it realizes the horizontal part of the cut in the lighting beam produced by the module 10.
  • The reflecting flat surface 22 has a second reflecting portion 54 which extends in a second half-plane, delimited by the longitudinal optical axis AA, and this secondary flat surface 54 has, at the front, a cutting edge 58 which is inclined, with respect to the horizontal plane, by a determined angle α, for example fifteen degrees.
  • According to an alternative embodiment (not shown) of the invention, the light source 14 may be formed by the free end of an optical fiber bundle.
  • A disadvantage of optical fibers is that they form a light source comprising a light core and a dark ring, due to the sheath surrounding the core of the fiber.
  • This type of light source, when used in a vehicle lighting projector using for example a reflector of the complex surface type, therefore forms, in the beam lighting, images in the form of pixels surrounded by a dark area, due to the sheath.
  • An advantage of the lighting module 10 according to the invention is that it allows all the images of the light source 14 to be mixed with the second focus F2 of the reflector 12, so that the lighting beam pixels of the optical fiber.

Claims (9)

  1. Lighting module (10) for a motor vehicle headlight which provides a lighting beam of the cut-off type, comprising, arranged from the rear to the front, globally according to a longitudinal horizontal optical axis (A-A), a reflector (12) of the elliptical type which delimits a reflection volume for light rays and comprises a substantially elliptical reflection surface (18, 20), at least one source of light (14) which is arranged in the vicinity of a first focal point (F1) of the reflector (12), and a convergent lens (16), the focal plane of which is arranged in the vicinity of the second focal point (F2) of the reflector (12), the reflector comprising a horizontal flat surface of reflection (22), the upper surface of which (24) is reflective, which delimits vertically downwards the volume of reflection, the flat surface (22) of the reflector (12) comprising a front end edge (28) known as the cut-off edge, which is arranged in the vicinity of the second focal point (F2) of the reflector (12), such as to form the cut-off in the lighting beam, the flat surface (22) of the reflector (18) being arranged on a horizontal flat plane which passes globally via the focal points (F1, F2) of the reflector (12), characterised in that the flat surface of the reflector extends longitudinally rearwards from its cut-off edge, at least as far as the vicinity of the first focal point (F1) of the reflector (12), in that the substantially elliptical surface (18, 20) of the reflector (12) is formed by an angular part sector substantially generated by revolution around the longitudinal optical axis (A-A), in that the angular sector extends vertically above the flat surface (22) of the reflector (12), and in that the source of light (14) is an electro-luminescent diode (44) or is formed by the free end of a beam of optical fibres, and in that this source is arranged in the module (10) such that its axis of diffusion of light (B-B) is substantially perpendicular to the flat surface (22) of the reflector (12).
  2. Lighting module (10) according to claim 1, characterised in that the reflector (12) is produced from a single solid piece of transparent material.
  3. Lighting module (10) according to claim 2, characterised in that the lens (16) is produced integrally with the reflector (12).
  4. Lighting module (10) according to either of claims 2 or 3, characterised in that the source of light (14) is arranged in a complementary cavity provided in the flat surface (22) of the reflector (12).
  5. Lighting module (10) according to any one of the preceding claims, characterised in that it comprises a plurality of adjacent sources of light (14) which are globally aligned according to a direction which is substantially horizontal and perpendicular to the longitudinal optical axis (A-A), such as to spread the width of the lighting beam.
  6. Lighting module (10) according to any one of the preceding claims, characterised in that the cut-off edge (28) of the flat surface (22) of the reflector (12) has a curved profile on the horizontal plane, such as to follow globally the curvature of the focal plane of the lens (16).
  7. Lighting module (10) according to any one of the preceding claims, characterised in that the horizontal flat surface (22) of the reflector (12) extends on a first half-plane (52) which is delimited by the longitudinal optical axis (A-A), in that a secondary flat surface (54) of the reflector extends on a second half-plane which is delimited by the longitudinal optical axis (A-A), and in that the secondary flat surface (54) of the reflector comprises a front cut-off edge (28) which is inclined relative to a horizontal plane, by a predetermined angle (α), such as to form an inclined cut-off in the lighting beam, in order to produce a regulation dipped lighting beam.
  8. Vehicle lighting headlight (46), characterised in that it comprises at least one lighting module (10) according to any one of the preceding claims.
  9. Vehicle lighting headlight (46) according to the preceding claim, taken in combination with any one of claims 1 to 5, of the type which is designed to produce a regulation dipped lighting beam, characterised in that it comprises at least two lighting modules (10) with substantially identical structures, which are arranged substantially in parallel:
    - a first lighting module (50), the cut-off edge (28) of which is substantially horizontal; and
    - a second lighting module (48) which is turned by a predetermined angle around its optical axis (A-A) relative to the first module (50), such that its cut-off edge (28) is inclined relative to a horizontal plane,
    so that the lighting beams produced by the two modules (48, 50) are superimposed and form the regulation dipped lighting beam.
EP03290971.5A 2002-04-25 2003-04-18 Elliptical lighting module without screen providing a cut-off beam and headlamp comprising the same Active EP1357334B2 (en)

Priority Applications (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
FR0205323 2002-04-25
FR0205323A FR2839139B1 (en) 2002-04-25 2002-04-25 Luminaire-free elliptical lighting module comprising a cut-off lighting beam and projector comprising such a module

Applications Claiming Priority (1)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
SI200331115T SI1357334T1 (en) 2002-04-25 2003-04-18 Elliptical lighting module without screen providing a cut-off beam and headlamp comprising the same

Publications (3)

Publication Number Publication Date
EP1357334A1 EP1357334A1 (en) 2003-10-29
EP1357334B1 true EP1357334B1 (en) 2007-11-07
EP1357334B2 EP1357334B2 (en) 2018-05-30

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EP03290971.5A Active EP1357334B2 (en) 2002-04-25 2003-04-18 Elliptical lighting module without screen providing a cut-off beam and headlamp comprising the same

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US (1) US6997587B2 (en)
EP (1) EP1357334B2 (en)
JP (1) JP4136773B2 (en)
AT (1) AT377732T (en)
DE (1) DE60317254T2 (en)
ES (1) ES2297107T5 (en)
FR (1) FR2839139B1 (en)
SI (1) SI1357334T1 (en)

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Also Published As

Publication number Publication date
EP1357334B2 (en) 2018-05-30
ES2297107T5 (en) 2018-12-12
FR2839139B1 (en) 2005-01-14
DE60317254T2 (en) 2008-08-28
DE60317254D1 (en) 2007-12-20
ES2297107T3 (en) 2008-05-01
JP4136773B2 (en) 2008-08-20
FR2839139A1 (en) 2003-10-31
US20030202359A1 (en) 2003-10-30
AT377732T (en) 2007-11-15
SI1357334T1 (en) 2008-04-30
EP1357334A1 (en) 2003-10-29
US6997587B2 (en) 2006-02-14
JP2003317515A (en) 2003-11-07

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