Article in Super Bike Magazine KTM-Flyer MCN LED
April 20, 2015
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The first DRL module for the BMW R1200GS/GSA is today officially released.

The xenon products are replaced by all new H7 LED systems. They are as bright as the xenon lights, but with much longer lifetime.

The ACCELERATOR module™ for the Triumph motorcycles are today officially released.

The first ACCELERATOR module™ for the BMW R1200GS liquid cooled is today officially released.

The first ACCELERATOR module™ for the Yamaha FJR1300 is today officially released.

The first ACCELERATOR module™ for the Yamaha XT1200Z Super Ténéré is today officially released.

The ACCELERATOR module™ for a wide range of KTM motorcycles are available today.

Solid Solutions and Schlowy Custom Motorcycles join forces to develop an "ACCELERATOR module"™ for the KTM motorbikes. Checkout the brochure.

Over 6000 ACCELERATOR module™ sold today!

Our Xenon conversion kit is 100% compatible with the BMW CAN-bus system. No error messages is generated on the multifunctional display!

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Regardless of which of the four seasons the motor is driven, whether it is day or night, for safety reasons, the motorcyclists should see and be seen.

Therefore Solid Solutions offers solutions to enhance the visibility, especially based on the latest CREE high power LED technology. With a luminosity up to ten times higher than that of conventional halogen lamps, the rider benefits from a considerable enhancement in safety in all road conditions and light situations.

Some differences...

Halogen headlights are currently the most popular in the automotive world, mostly because of their primary advantage: they're simple and cost effective. Basically a halogen light bulb has a lifetime of about 1,000 hours under normal conditions. However, halogen bulbs are becoming the second option around the world. The reason? Halogen isn't exactly synonym to efficiency.

Why? First of all, it is made of a glass envelope capable of resisting very high temperatures, plus a gas, usually a combination of argon and nitrogen, along with a tungsten filament. In order to create light, the tungsten filament receives electricity from the battery and by the resistance of this filament it is heated to about 2500 degrees Celsius.

When the halogen light bulb comes to the end of its lifetime, it usually happens so because the tungsten in the filament evaporates and leaves the filament, getting deposited on the glass and causing the filament to rupture at some point and render itself not functional.

But that's not the major issue, though. The biggest problem is that, while generating the radiating light, the bulb also creates a large amount of heat which basically represents wasted energy.

Another major problem with halogen bulbs is also the way they react to various substances. For example, when replacing a faulty bulb, it is mandatory to avoid touching the glass of the spare one! The grease on your fingers will stick to the quartz glass, causing it to heat unevenly and drastically cut the bulb's life.

Xenon headlights, officially known as high-intensity discharge headlamps (HIDs), are usually defined as a more efficient solution, mostly because of the colour temperature choice and the amount of light they generate.

HID lights work as follows. You have an enclosed tube filled with gases, an electrode at each end and an electric current passing through. In the automotive world, HID lamps are using a transparent quartz housing, tungsten electrodes and a mix of gases that get stimulated by the high-voltage electric current passing between the two electrodes.

One of the main problems with HID lamps is the amount of time needed for the gases inside to reach their operating temperature and provide a strong light.

The process of lightning up HID lamps happens in three steps: first comes the ignition phase, when a high voltage pulse produces a spark that ionizes the xenon gas and creates a tunnel of current between electrodes, then the temperature in the bulb rises quickly vaporizing the metallic salts which lowers the resistance between the two electrodes; ultimately, the ballast switches to continuous operation supplying the lamp a continuous amount of power so that the electric arc won't flicker.

A xenon headlight is much more efficient when it comes to the amount of produced light as compared to the halogen ones. Ultimately, one of the disadvantage is the amount of glare generated by the xenon headlamps might be extremely disturbing for the other drivers on the road, especially for incoming traffic.

A xenon bulb produces about 3000 lumens, while a halogen light generates around 1000 lumens.

Another big plus comes because xenon lights have a pretty long lifetime, exceeding the one of halogen lamps: estimates are pointing to an operation life of around 2,000 hours in normal conditions.

Efficiency might be another advantage. Although they do use more power to kick-start into action, but after they've reached operating temperature, they'll actually use less power than standard halogen bulbs.

Setbacks? Well, obviously they're going to cost more than halogen lights and are more complex, since they require a device called ballast, which creates and regulates the high voltage needed by the HIDs to operate.

Let's not forget these xenon lights needs a certain time to reach full brightness, reason why they are not that good to be used for high beam highlight – as signal warning function.

The automotive industry has evolved a lot, that's for sure. Along with it, headlamps have reached another level and turn to another option: LEDs. Especially the last year the output power has increased enormous. The meet or surpass the light intensity of xenon headlights (3000 lumens).

The working principle of an LED is quite hard to explain, but in short words, they rely on negative electrons moving against positive "holes" across a semiconductor. When a free electron falls into a hole that sits on a lower energy level, it will lose its energy which is released as a photon (the tiniest fraction of light) in a process called electroluminescence.

Multiply this process thousands of times per second and you have a continuous bright light being emitted from something about 2 mm wide - a light emitting diode (LED).

The most important aspect when it comes to LED headlights is the fact that they need very low power to work compared to classic halogen bulbs.

LED headlights provide much focused rays and can also be played with to create different shapes. Also, thanks to their small size, LEDs allow for great manipulation. LEDs are brighter than halogen headlights while still offering a warmer light than HIDs.

The thermal management is quite different as for halogen or xenon headlights. LEDs do not emit heat as they light up, like halogen headlights for example, they do create a certain amount of heat at the bottom of the emitter (mainly the chip) when the electricity passes through, thus creating a potential risk for adjacent assemblies and connectivity cables. Reason why LED headlamps need cooling systems, like heat sinks or fans to keep them from melting. The latest designs do incorporate an electronic intelligent heat management control system.

Because of this latest changes in performance of the headlight LEDs, Solid Solutions is shifting its light products towards this latest technology. Please visit the other pages to see the LED products that Solid Solutions offers for the moment.

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