Audi has introduced a head-up display with the new Audi A7 Sportback and will also do so for the upcoming Audi A6. However they are already hard at work for the next generation. Read on what it will bring!
Audi is the first automotive manufacturer in the world to offer a full-color head-up display with TFT screen technology. As well as RGB color filters, new polarization filters are used; their high contrast is sufficient even for very difficult light conditions. 15 white LEDs give the TFT monitor on which the images are generated particularly bright back-lighting. A sensor adjusts the display to the ambient brightness; the driver can also adjust it at any time.
The power consumption of the light-emitting diodes and all other components is extremely low. All components are designed so that they easily withstand the temperatures occurring in the head-up display. The system operates without any active cooling – another factor that boosts efficiency.
The windshield on which the image is projected acts like a concave mirror – it enlarges the image, with the typical distortion. Two convex corrector mirrors in the optical path made from plastic, with a special coating, compensate for this and increase the optical imaging performance.
To avoid double images, the windshield and its soundproofing safety film have a slightly tapered profile. They are manufactured with utmost precision; minute deviations from the ideal surface nevertheless cannot be avoided entirely. Audi has therefore installed an optical measuring system at the end of the production line on which the A7 Sportback and the new A6 are built. It analyzes the deviations to a thousandth of a millimeter and recalibrates the mirrors in the head-up display accordingly.
The next-generation head-up display
Audi is already planning the next development in head-up display technology – the “high-fidelity head-up display”. This makes it possible to seemingly position the displays in the real environment. A navigation arrow, for instance, is no longer perceived as being at a fixed distance over the front lid; it is now directly at the junction that it is indicating. The arrow increases in size as the car approaches the junction. It remains over the junction, appearing to come nearer to the driver.