Driving at night presents greater risks and challenges than daytime driving. Poor sight conditions on highways and roads can make it difficult for drivers to detect animals as well as humans that may be in their path. Over the years, automobile manufacturers have developed enhanced systems to improve road safety for drivers and pedestrians alike. These systems have become more sophisticated as technology has improved.
An automobile manufacturer wanted to add an infrared camera system to a front facing vehicle detection device. The device would detect differences in temperature emitted by objects or human beings and alert the driver that they were in the path of the automobile. To ensure that the system was reliable and as accurate as possible, the camera needed to be periodically calibrated when outside temperatures changed drastically. To permit calibration to take place, a small flag needed to be moved over the lens to provide a known surface texture and color.
The application called for an actuator that was compact in design with a very fast response time. TLX determined that a miniature latching solenoid would provide the best solution. The miniature latching solenoid could be circuit board mounted and would move the flag into position (covering the lens) with a pulse of power to allow the calibration. Once calibrated, another pulse of power of opposite polarity would cancel the magnet and allow the spring loaded flag to move back to its original position. The miniature latching solenoid offered a cost effective and reliable solution to meet the manufacturer’s needs.
This solenoid can be designed as a constant current or latch as well as a push or pull operation depending on the application requirements.