Valeo estimates that the company’s new Remote Clean4U windshield defrosting and cleaning system, shown at 2015 IAA (Frankfurt Motor Show) for the first time, consumes 28 times less energy than an electric defrosting system.
The system uses Valeo’s Aquablade wiper blade system to distribute defrosting fluid. This is not sprayed onto the windshield like washer fluid, instead, the Aquablade system sprays the fluid onto the windscreen immediately ahead of the blade, then the windshield wipers clear away the frost, one section at a time with the wiper blades stopping after the segment has been cleared while more defrosting fluid is spread and the next section cleared. Valeo claims that the system clears a windshield in less than 90 s at a temperature of -20°C (-4°F).
The defroster system is connected to the Aquablade system in parallel with a windshield debugging (cleaner) system. An ECU controls either the windshield debugging washer pump or defroster pump as required, and the fluids are distributed to both wiper blades.
A smart phone app can be used to trigger either operation before the driver enters the car, ensuring the windshield is ice- or bug-free when the driver is ready to go. It could also ensure that the vehicle remains secure during defrosting if it is parked on the street.
Valeo research in the U.S. in 2014 suggests that most drivers clear frost by scraping the windscreen with the engine running and most would prefer an alternative. The company claims that the Aquablade system reduces vehicle weight by 2.0 kg (4.4 lb) because only a small amount of fluid is needed to clear the windshield, resulting in a reduction in CO2 emissions of a claimed 0.2 g/km.
Valeo also displayed its matrix laser headlight system at the IAA. The company has already developed a combined laser and LED headlight system that is due to be launched at the end of 2016 in a premium model. In the combined system, a laser diode beam is added to the LED lamps and is activated as the vehicle accelerates. Valeo claims that this system can double the distance visible to the driver at night. While the LED lights illuminate an area up to 300 m (985 ft) ahead, the laser beam extends this to 600 m (1970 ft) in a straight line.
The matrix laser system will use the same matrix technology from LED matrix head lights, enabling the lighting pattern to be adjusted by turning sections of the matrix on or off as required to maintain lighting without dazzling oncoming vehicles or vehicles ahead. Valeo claims that the matrix laser lighting is more precise and compact, improving packaging and lighting. This technology is due to be available in 2018.
Valeo also displayed in-door illumination designed to allow customization of vehicle interior lighting. Light sources can be used to illuminate the cabin in unexpected places. This could mean from behind translucent or screen-printed design features. In-door illumination could be used for personalization, drawing attention to a range of features from cabin design, interior space, or trim. This might include brand-specific designs visible when the door is opened.