Auto Express, a leading UK automotive magazine, released a highlight on the lighting features in the recently updated Audi A8, including the dazzling OLED taillights. Auto Express elaborates on the next steps that Audi has outlined for this revolutionary technology, and how it can be used to increase safety on the roads.

Read an excerpt from the article below.

The A8 currently uses a set of OLED tail-lights, which utilise a light signature that has six individual organic LED (OLED) elements. These can be customised via a selection of presets in the car’s infotainment screen, allowing drivers to personalise the look of their car.

Audi told us the next step is to increase the number of OLED elements in this unit by a factor of 10, resulting in 60 tiny OLEDs per cluster. As seen in the Audi A6 e-tron concept, this will allow for greater creative flexibility in what the light engineers can program the car to display.

Continuing the emphasis on safety, Audi plans to eventually display warning signals through the rear light signatures to alert drivers behind the car of hazards. Images would be used in favour of text to overcome language barriers; however, getting this kind of feature homologated will take years of negotiation with authorities.

Read the full article

On May 20, China-based OLED lighting manufacturer Yeolight broke ground on their new 4.5 generation OLED manufacturing facility in Huaibei City, China. The “4.5th Generation Organic Light-Emitting Device (OLED) Industrialization project” is expected to finish construction and begin operation sometime in 2023. Yeolight provides the OLED lighting panels that come standard in the Hongqi H9, and their new fab will allow them to keep “redefining the world of light with technological innovation”.

Read an excerpt from the article below.

*Original article content below translated from Mandarin to English

At 10:18 a.m. on May 20, 2022, with the slow start of the two pile drivers, Yiguang Technology’s “4.5th generation organic light-emitting device (OLED) industrialization” project officially entered the pile driver stage, and the entire project went smoothly. The sequence progresses rapidly.

Huaibei Yiguang Construction Site Yiguang Technology’s “4.5th Generation Organic Light-Emitting Device (OLED) Industrialization” project is located in Xiangshan Economic Development Zone, Huaibei City, Anhui Province. The construction period is 2 years, and it will be completed and put into operation in 2023.

Driven by the “new four modernizations” of electrified, intelligent, networked, and shared vehicles, the automotive industry is increasingly pursuing new technologies. Advantages, in today’s intelligent development of automotive lighting, stand out in many technical routes. In addition to the advantages of light and thin, uniform lighting, soft lighting, low heat generation, and no glare, OLED light sources also have the characteristics of transparency, flexibility and displayability.

These advantages can easily realize flexible and changeable lamp shapes and make the lamps more fashionable. It enriches the design connotation of the car, improves the recognition of the car brand, and is favored by many car OEMs. Audi, as the “light factory” in the automotive industry, first started the application of OLED car light products, and then Mercedes-Benz, BMW and many other brands also began to actively deploy their own OLED technology.

For domestic brands, Hongqi H9 is a domestic high-end model that benchmarks against BBA’s first-tier luxury brands. It also comes standard with OLED taillights (provided exclusively by Yiguang Technology).

Yiguang Technology has been deeply involved in OLED technology for many years, and has been committed to the application development and research of OLED technology in the field of lighting.

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The Driving Vision News (DVN) team recently attended a presentation of the updated Audi A8 that included a test drive and technological demonstration of the digital matrix headlights and digital OLED rear lighting. The team was impressed by the dynamic sequencing and capabilities demonstrated by the Audi team and wrote that the vehicle “sparkles ahead and behind”.

Read an excerpt from the article below.

The A8’s rear lighting is also digital with 48 OLED segments. Audi have pushed the state of the OLED taillight art quite successfully since their introduction in 2016 on the TT RS, and this has created more freedom and opportunities to design dynamic lighting scenarios.

Digitalisation brings the possibility of changing the taillight signature individually. These features are based on OLED properties: high contrast; the capacity for segmentation; great homogeneity, and the smallest possible gaps between segments. Audi light design conceptualises a specific selection of digital OLED rear light signatures for each model, and digitalisation allows the driver to customise their car by picking which of three tail light signature they want (four on the S8).

Audi A8 OLED Signatures
Audi A8 OLED Signatures, courtesy of Audi Media Center

And there’s more: the digital OLED rear lights use a proximity indication to grab the attention of other road users. When a car; bicycle, or scooter gets critically close to a stationary A8, the parking sensors detect it and all the OLED segments are lit, so the additional brightness and larger surface area make the car as conspicuous as possible. When the proximity alert ends (the A8 pulls away), the rear lights revert to the selected signature.

That’s a lot of highlights, but there’s more to come; Audi are actively developing more ideas; digitalization, animation, communication, and personalization are setting the tone. Here are a few examples of what Audi are working on for future vehicles:

Flexible Digital OLED

Bendable OLED for Automotive Rendering

Digital OLEDs with up to 100 segments per panel

Digital OLED Demonstrator by Audi

Read the Full Article

By Dr. Kathleen Vaeth, Director of OLED User Experience, OLEDWorks

Interior automotive lighting has transformed in recent years, evolving in form, function, and how it interacts with the driver and passengers. As instrument panels have progressed from illuminated, backlit, or glow-in-the-dark dials to digital screens, and users have moved to electronic displays for maps and other reading material, automotive interior illumination requirements have shifted.

These shifts, combined with advances in lighting technology, allow for new design approaches capable of increasing driver comfort and safety while also expanding opportunities for personalization and the incorporation of a greater sense of pride in car ownership. Here, I will discuss some of these trends and how OLED technology fits into this transformation of automotive interior lighting.

Ambient Lighting and Safety

Studies have shown that ambient interior vehicle lighting can play a key role in driver alertness and performance.1 Well-designed, low glare lighting systems enhance the driver’s sense of space and orientation in the vehicle and can make tasks such as locating and adjusting controls more intuitive. This helps keep the driver focused on the road and improves overall safety.

Historically, there were only a handful of lighting elements in the car interior that targeted specific, task-oriented functions. As lighting technology has become more compact, this has expanded to include the vehicle doors, dashboard, center console, gear sticks, and floor area, with more locations expected in the future. With this number of lighting components, system-level controls are required, presenting an opportunity for coordination of interior illumination with other sensors and functions in the vehicle, including turn, brake, and crash warning detection, all of which can provide an enhanced layer of protection.

The introduction of autonomous vehicles will accelerate this trend, allowing ambient lighting to become an extension of the car safety system. In fact, signaling such as flashes or pulsing from interior lighting systems has been shown to play an important role in driver response times for autonomous vehicle takeover systems.2

OLED Lighting Saves Space in Vehicle Interiors

One of the challenges with these architectures is the limited space for integrating so many lighting elements in the vehicle. This is particularly true with thicker optical assemblies, which are sometimes needed to keep lighting glare to a minimum with inorganic LED technology. In these situations, OLED lighting panels offer a unique and different approach.

Illumination from OLED panels is diffuse, highly uniform, and low in glare, all in an assembly one millimeter thick. The Lambertian emission provides light with a wide viewing angle that fills the vehicle interior without harsh contrast or shadowing for a comfortable rider experience. These properties are inherent to OLED technology and independent of panel size, allowing the slim profile to be maintained with larger panels. This, combined with the additional benefit of not needing to design and assemble additional lenses or diffusers to achieve high quality light, makes the technology lightweight and highly scalable.

Automotive Interior OLED Rendering
Automotive interior OLED rendering

The compact profile of OLED lighting panels also allows easy integration in tight spaces, such as the vehicle ceiling, doors, seats, center console, and foot area. Bendable OLED panels offer a form factor that allows seamless incorporation of light over curved surfaces while maintaining highly uniform, low glare illumination.

OLED Mirror Lighting
Rendering of OLED lighting in a vehicle mirror

Comfort and Design with OLED Lighting

Ambient interior automotive lighting can also evoke an emotional response from its occupants, playing an important role in the sense of quality, comfort, satisfaction, and pride in vehicle ownership. It is worth noting that many aspects of automotive interior lighting are not regulated, giving auto manufacturers the freedom to explore designs that define and differentiate their brand.

Proper illumination can provide a sense of spaciousness and emphasize luxury by highlighting other design elements and high-quality materials in the interior. As more and more elements are integrated into the vehicle as a system, localized personalization of lighting — from the ability to adjust dimming levels to driver specific hello and goodbye signatures — is also possible. Studies have shown that illumination preferences vary between genders and geographical regions, making this capability particularly important.3

OLED technology will enable this increased emphasis on personalization and branding with ambient vehicle interior lighting systems. The broad surface emission from OLEDs is 1-100% dimmable and results in cool-to-the-touch panel operation making it possible to integrate lighting with more delicate luxury materials, such as wood and leather.

The highly uniform emission and thin panel profile also enable the creation of interesting optical effects through translucent or even cut transparent materials such as crystals and fabric. In addition, the crisp segmentation characteristic of OLED lighting technology opens up opportunities for unique branding and personalization elements within the vehicle, such as mirrors with embedded illuminated logos and animated segmentation of shapes or entire lighted surfaces.

Wegmans OLED Logo Panel
Example of OLED logo capabilities*

As automakers move to self-driving cars, the approach to interior lighting design will shift even further. Drivers will increasingly become more like passengers, requiring interior spaces to reflect comfort and design qualities comparable to their homes and workspaces. Adjustability and personalization will become even more important, not only for each vehicle occupant, but also for reflecting the mood and activity inside the car.

It is an exciting time for ambient automotive interior lighting design. With increased capability for lighting system controls and the emergence of autonomous vehicles, automakers will have even greater flexibility to put their mark inside the vehicle, incorporating elements that improve driver safety, comfort, and satisfaction. OLED lighting will play an integral role in the coming transformation.


  1. Caberletti L., Elfmann K., Kummel M., Schierz C., “Influence of ambient lighting in a vehicle interior on the driver’s perceptions” Lighting Research & Technology 2010 42 (3) p. 297.
  2. Francesco, F., Walker, Oliver, O., Morgenstern, Javier, J.M., Avila, Marieke, M.H., Martens and Willem, W.B., Verwey. “A Novel Technique for Faster Responses to Take Over Requests in an Automated Vehicle” In 13th International Conference on Automotive User Interfaces and Interactive Vehicular Applications (AutomotiveUI ’21), September 09-14, 2021, Leeds, United Kingdom. ACM, New York, NY, USA
  3. Weirich C., Lin Y., Khanh T.Q., “Evidence for Human-Centric In-Vehicle Lighting: Part 1” Applied Sciences 2022 12 (2) p.552.

*This article contains images of illuminated corporate logos as demonstrations of OLED lighting capabilities. Neither nor OLEDWorks claim any relationship or affiliation with these companies.

Auto Bild, a leading German automotive magazine, released an article this week discussing how digital lighting technologies can increase safety on the road. Based on the activities and conversations during TechDay hosted by Audi, Auto Bild outlines the benefits of digital matrix LED headlights and digital OLED rear lighting, which are becoming increasingly visible in Audi’s premiere vehicle offerings like the newly redesigned A8. The author explains the basics of how OLEDs work and goes on to explore Audi’s goal of incorporating 600 segments per OLED panel in future models for increased personalization and communication capabilities.

Below are some excerpts from the article relating to OLED lighting.

*Original article content below translated from German to English

Rear lights: digital OLED technology as a means of communication

But not only the headlights are now being digitized at Audi, the taillights are also getting new functions thanks to digital OLED technology (Organic Light-Emitting Diode).

What the Ingolstadt company started with the dynamic indicators is now to be continued in terms of design with the small glass panels.

Bendable OLED demonstrator
Bendable OLED demonstrator, courtesy of Auto Bild

Eight OLED units, each with six light areas, already produce a special light signature in the A8 facelift , which can even be changed from the interior.

In the future, the company even plans to pack up to 600 light elements on just one panel. In this way, detailed warning symbols can be displayed in the lights and the environment can be interacted with.

How OLEDs work

Basically, OLEDs work like classic LEDs, except that they do not generate a single point of light, but rather shine on a defined area. Different layers in the OLED modules allow the applied current to act on the surface.

In the electronics sector, even displays based on this technology have become established. Since OLEDs are self-illuminating and do not require a backlight, they have extremely high contrast.

Segmented OLED prototype
OLED prototype with nearly 600 segments each, courtesy of Auto Bild

The black point of such displays is also significantly lower than that of conventional displays. While different colors can be shown in displays, only the color red has been common in the automotive sector so far.

The chemistry used in the OLED units has so far not made it possible to display white color tones; at least not in a quality that manufacturers imagine. In the future, Audi is also working on white OLEDs for their vehicles.

Read the Full Article

In this week’s Audi TechFocus Newsletter, the German automotive manufacturer released a piece titled “How Audi’s Light Digitization is Pointing the Way Toward the Future”. We were particularly interested in the article’s focus on digital OLED lighting technology and the benefits that this technology offers.

A brief recap of Audi’s history with OLED development begins with the segmented panel in the 2016 TT RS, evolves into the first adjustable taillight signatures in the 2020 Q5, and finally leads to the inclusion of digital OLED rear lights as standard in the updated Audi A8. The A8 product line contains up to four signature selections and uses proximity detection to illuminate the OLEDs to full brightness if a car gets close to the stationary Audi.

Below are excerpts from the article that discuss OLED technology.

At a distance: proximity indication in the digital OLED rear lights increases safety

The digital OLED rear lights use a proximity indication to grab the attention of other road users. When a car gets close to a stationary Audi, the parking sensors take note of the movement and engage all the remaining OLED segments so that the additional brightness and larger surface area make its presence as noticeable as possible. When the Audi pulls away, the digital OLED rear lights revert to the selected signature. This added safety measure even applies for people on bicycles and scooters: the sensors recognize them too.

It’s about the curves: flexible digital OLED

Apart from refining the Digital Matrix LED headlights, digital OLED technology in particular will define the future by not being just a conventional light source. Its development points in the direction of exterior displays, that not only increase safety and enable even more personalization, but are also meant to improve communication with the outside world. However, flexible digital OLED rear lights are a step ahead of that. They have a flexible substrate that allows them to go from a two-dimensional structure to a three-dimensional one. That not only sharpens the form, but it also makes it possible to integrate digital light design within the exterior of the lights, enabling symbol displays for additional communication with the outside world.

Bendable OLED for Automotive Rendering
Bendable OLED rendering, courtesy of Audi Media Center

More than the service life of a car: OLED and lifelong quality

One question that often comes up about the technology in the digital OLED rear lights is the matter of durability. Audi’s digital OLEDs are designed for the high demands are automotive use. A special material development impedes degeneration by influencing the temperature and encapsulation technology, preventing the OLED elements from coming into contact with moisture. That means the OLED elements match the durability profile and meet the same demands as conventional inorganic car LEDs. Because of this, digital OLEDs have significantly longer service lives than traditional OLED displays, and they do it with much higher light density to meet the challenges of automotive exterior lighting.

Read the Full Article

This morning, OLEDWorks announced at the International Symposium on Automotive Lighting (ISAL) that it is the official supplier for the digital OLED taillights in the updated Audi A8. OLEDWorks announced their predevelopment collaboration with Audi in May of 2019, and this is the first confirmation of a commercial vehicle that contains OLEDWorks lighting technology. Team members from OLEDWorks and Audi can both be found at this year’s ISAL conference from April 4-6 in Darmstadt.

The 2022 A8 model includes digital OLED tail lights as a standard feature, and offers up to four different light signatures across the model range. OLEDWorks aims to “increase safety on the road and energize the consumer experience” through their collaboration with automotive manufacturers and Tier 1 suppliers.

Read an excerpt of the press release below for quotes by representatives at OLEDWorks and Audi.

“The OLED panels are put through an arduous reliability and performance testing process which, depending on testing requirements, could take up to three years to complete,” says David DeJoy, CEO at OLEDWorks. “It’s incredibly rewarding to see the product on the road and we’re looking forward to our continued partnership for future vehicles.”

OLEDWorks Panels in Audi A8
Image courtesy of Audi Media Center

Dr. Michael Kruppa, Head of Lighting Innovations at Audi says “Digital OLED as a standard feature in the Audi A8 is a great achievement coming from our strategic focus on this unique technology. Audi was the first manufacturer to digitize the rear lights that turns them into a display and opens up new potential in terms of styling, personalization and safety.”

Read the full press release: OLEDWorks is Supplier of Digital OLED Tail Lights in the updated Audi A8

By Jeff Spindler, Director of Research and Development at OLEDWorks

As lighting technology advances, it provides increasingly unique and custom lighting options. One such advancement is the use of segmented OLED lighting, which can increase safety in automotive applications and branding potential across nearly every industry.

What is Segmented OLED Lighting?

OLED lighting’s unique composition and manufacturing process means it can be designed with intrinsic, individually addressable and dimmable segments within the panel design. These segments can take on the shapes of triangles, hexagons, or virtually any desired shape and size, and can be illuminated to create symbols or patterns.

Because they are built into the design of the panel and are not just a film placed over the lit area, each segment has crisp and clear edges with a super high contrast. The OLED illumination within the lit segment can be very bright and highly uniform at the same time, unlike any other lighting technology. In the off-state, OLEDs typically have a mirror finish which gives them a chrome-like appearance.

Segmented OLED Lighting
OLED lighting segmentation for automotive – over 600 segments in a lit area of 56mm x 203mm

Logos and patterns can be combined with segmentation, allowing for parts of logos to be illuminated and dimmed individually and dynamically. Imagine a company logo consisting of letters and objects, where the letters can be lit separately, and the objects can also be broken into pieces and lit separately. Highly intricate and fine patterns can be uniformly illuminated, even as small as the diameter of a human hair. Dynamic lighting sequences and animations can be customized as desired – the possibilities are endless with segmented OLEDs.

Wegmans OLED Logo Panel
Example of crisp OLED logo capabilities*

These options expand the possibilities for lighting design and branding across every application from transportation to commercial and residential lighting.

Segmented OLEDs for Automotive Rear Lighting

Segmented OLED lighting originally found adoption in the automotive industry, particularly for rear tail lighting. When used in rear combination lighting, the vehicle can display a light signature that cannot be replicated with any other technology, imbuing the car with a sense of individuality. Additionally, OLED taillights can increase driver and passenger safety through Car-to-X communication.

Car-to-X communication is the process of technologies in a vehicle sharing information in real time. Segmented OLED lighting is one such Car-to-X technology and can share information with surrounding drivers. For example, if a driver suddenly presses the brake, rear OLEDs can display a dynamic warning symbol to the drivers behind them, telling them to slow down.

Animation of OLED Car-to-X communication – Courtesy of Audi Media Center

As the number of segments per panel increases, OLEDs can display increasingly complex symbols and imagery. If the road is icy, a symbol like a snowflake can inform those behind to drive cautiously. If there is an accident ahead, a different symbol could indicate that drivers need to slow down and move over. These dynamic warnings give drivers additional time to respond to this information, increasing the safety of everyone on the road.

Segmented OLED Animations
OLED Snowflakes – an example of OLED animation capabilities

Additionally, segmented OLEDs can be used in Center High Mounted Stop Lights (CHMSLs) to further differentiate between brands. Using individually addressable segments of OLED lighting, CHMSLs can be created with unique designs that include the manufacturer’s illuminated logo.

OLEDWorks CHMSL concept

Segmented OLEDs for Automotive Interiors

Just like exterior lighting, interior lighting for automobiles is becoming more and more complex and digitalized with increasing numbers of new light elements and functions for day and night lighting. Interiors of cars will become more like a living space with dynamic and adaptive lighting functions for safety, comfort, ambiance, styling, and brand differentiation.

Digital segmented OLEDs fit perfectly into this future scenario. While LEDs and other intense light sources must be hidden to indirectly illuminate the interior, segmented OLEDs will excel in dynamic interior lighting applications where the light source is preferred to be directly in view, due to the soft and diffuse nature of the OLED emission. This can include ambient lighting, mood lighting, task lighting, mirror lighting, illuminated logos or emblems, and welcome/farewell lighting signatures. And because of their ultrathin profile and flexibility, segmented OLED lights can be seamlessly integrated into thin and narrow embedded spaces inside the vehicle.

OLEDs Expand Design and Branding Potential for Retail and Hospitality

Beyond the benefits for digital automotive lighting, segmented OLEDs enable companies to create unique branding opportunities.

Retail locations and coffee houses could greet their customers with dynamically illuminated logos or custom lighting animations using segmented OLEDs embedded in walls, countertops, partitions, tables and other furniture.

Starbucks OLED Logo Panel
Example of OLED logo capabilities for coffee shops

Likewise, hotels could greet travelers with their dynamically illuminated logos on the wall at each entrance, at service desks, bars, lounges, and other common locations. Beyond specific logos, dynamic and adaptive digital segmented OLED lighting can also extend to signage such as exit, “no smoking”, and restroom sign illumination, as well as ambient lighting, nighttime lighting, way finding, and task lighting in rooms.

Hilton OLED Logo Panel
Examples of OLED logo illumination for hospitality settings

With the ability to adjust their design to meet each project’s specific needs, segmented OLEDs create custom lighting solutions that cannot be matched by other lighting technologies. When combined with their ultrathin profile, flexibility, dimmability, excellent reliability, long lifetimes and unparalleled light quality, OLED lighting offers an ideal choice for custom embedded lighting solutions.

*This article contains images of illuminated corporate logos as demonstrations of OLED lighting capabilities. Neither nor OLEDWorks claim any relationship or affiliation with these companies.