Diffractive optics based automotive lighting system: A rear end lamp design for communication between road users

Muhammad Shaukat Khan, Woheeb Muhammad Saeed, Bernhard Roth, Roland Lachmayer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Information projection using laser-based illumination systems in the automotive area is of keen interest to enhance communication between road users. Numerous work on laser-based front end projection employing refractive and reflective optics has been reported so far, while for rear end illumination efforts are more scarce and a different optical design concept due to limited volumetric size and field of view regulations is required. Here, we report on a new and versatile approach for a laser-based rear end lighting system for automotive application which enables projection of information or signals to support other road users. The design is based on thin diffractive optical elements projecting the desired patterns upon illumination. Also, for protection of the road users from the steering laser beam, a diffusive back projection screen is designed to project information while fulfilling both the field of view and safety requirements. The projection system is based on a periodic diffusive structure made of an array of biconic lenses with sizes in the millimeter range. The field of view (FOV) from the simulated lens arrays complies with the angular requirements set by the Economic Commission for Europe (ECE). As a proof of concept, the diffusive screen is fabricated using microfabrication technology and characterized. In future, the screen will be combined with thin diffractive optical elements to realize an entire integrated projection system.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAdvanced Optical Technologies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2021
Externally publishedYes


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