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Old 11-22-2014, 06:13 PM #1
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Default Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

Hi,

I'd like to rebuild the BMW i8 headlamps, and use them for off-road use on my car. Anybody has an idea where I could get the components needed?

According to the Popular Mechanics article below, there are three laser diodes (455nm likely). I figured I would need

a) a prism that combines the three laser beams into one.
b) a mirror that reflects deflects the beam by 90 degrees
c) a diffusor to spread the beam
d) a phosphorus target that lights up
e) maybe some lenses for focus adjustments in between

I guess they had a few optical wizards at BMW to figure this out...

How It Works - The BMW i8ís Laser Headlights - Popular Mechanics


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Old 11-23-2014, 03:08 PM #2
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

a) That's not how prisms work.
b) why?
c) see d below:
d) yes. And phosphor is diffuse by default.
e) yes, to focus the diffuse light created in d above.

Think of it as creating a white LED... using a laser diode + remote phosphor instead of light-emitting diode + local phosphor.
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Old 11-23-2014, 03:24 PM #3
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

I did something that works on the same principle but used for area lighting. Good luck getting it focused and assembled into a dust proof, water proof and shock proof enclosure.

Experimental: Remote solid state lighting
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Old 11-24-2014, 02:13 PM #4
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

Thanks for the post and the link. Impressive.

Could you please tell us where you bought the phosphorus strips you mention? I seem to have trouble locating phosphor that is really lighting up, and generating real white light. I have a few lasers (300-700mw) between 405-455, and they just make it glow, light strength is at the most like a candle, and has an ugly greenish tone. Looks like companies like intermatix use their own custom phosphor coatings to achieve optimal white light. Thank You!
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Old 11-24-2014, 02:14 PM #5
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

Thanks for your post.

Any idea then how to combine multiple laser beams into one? Next challenge then is of course not to burn the phosphor. Any recommendations on lenses / lens combinations for focus adjustment.
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Old 11-24-2014, 02:28 PM #6
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

I used the intematix chromalit remote phosphor strips from digikey. Use PBS cubes or knife edging to combine the beams. Lots of info on that in this forum.
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Old 11-24-2014, 04:25 PM #7
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

Not sure if you already know this, but each of the three lasers is probably at least outputting 1W
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Old 11-24-2014, 04:40 PM #8
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

Thank You. I did a quick estimation, and I came to the conclusion that they must be at minimum 2W, but probably something closer to 5W each!!!

Any idea what's the strongest laser diode in 455nm you can buy today?
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Old 11-24-2014, 04:47 PM #9
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

subscribe.

Did anybody try to use the white LED lamp's phosphor with blue lasers?
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Old 11-24-2014, 04:49 PM #10
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

What is white LED lamp's phosphor? Do you have a link what you're referring to?
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Old 11-24-2014, 04:55 PM #11
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

That what is inside like these http://www.costco.ca/light-bulbs.html
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Old 11-24-2014, 04:58 PM #12
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Default Re: Re-creating the BMW i8 Headlamps

You need yellow with blue to create a white light. Otherwise, it looks blueish cold.
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