Using Solenoids to Improve Vehicle and Pedestrian Safety

An automobile manufacturer wanted to add an infrared camera to a vehicle detection device. The solenoid was designed to move a calibration flag over the lens.

Customer Problem

An automobile manufacturer wanted to add an infrared camera to a front-facing vehicle detection device. The device detected the thermal signature emitted by objects or pedestrians in the path of the automobile. Maintaining the accuracy and reliability of this system meant the camera needed to be calibrated when there was a drastic change in temperature. To calibrate the camera, a small flag needed to move over the lens, providing a known surface texture and color.

The TLX Solution

The infrared camera system needed a compact actuator with a fast response time. TLX Technologies designed a miniature latching solenoid that could be mounted to the circuit board. A pulse of power charges the magnet, extending the armature to move the calibration flag over the lens. Once calibrated, another pulse of power cancels the magnet, allowing the solenoid’s spring to retract the armature. This moves the flag back to its original position.

Miniature Latching Solenoid

Holding force
.834 N (3 oz)
Response time
<30 ms
Supply voltage
12 Vdc
Operating temperature range
-40 to 60°C
Coil resistance at 20°C
8.0 ± .04 Ω
>10M cycles
Duty rating
10% ED
Connector type
Customer specified

All TLX components are customized to fit system requirements, meaning technical specifications are unique to each customer and design. Examples given on our website are for illustration purposes only.