Since we have a thorough approach to hardware design, we enlisted an advanced optic lab in Canada to lend us a hand: Optech. With experience in fiber optics, sensors, lenses and much more, these guys know how to bend light at their will. Let’s take a look at our lighting goals and how we integrated our components to achieve the look and feel we wanted with SmartHalo.
Our interface has to be fluid and appear to be alive. To create our light halo, we placed 24 RGB LEDs on our circular printed circuit board. The issue with these LEDs is that they create luminous hot spots. You can clearly see the improvements with the simulations below before and after.
To counterbalance this and create a continuous light stream, Optech went though many design iterations to create the perfect diffuser which uses little domes that encapsulate each LED. Combined with our liquid animations, this gives our halo the smoothness it always deserved.
When SmartHalo is off, it doesn’t even look like there is an interface. This isn’t a coincidence: we wanted SmartHalo’s design to be subtle to prevent attracting unwanted attention. Also, traditional LCD screens just didn’t look right to us. To accomplish this, we put a tinted lens on top of SmartHalo that lets light pass on one side only.
But the sun emits some prettttty strong light. This might seem of little relevance, but designing a bike product has to take this into account to make sure it’s interface is always visible, even with a high noon sun down in Mexico. So, how did we tackle this challenge? By giving our top lens a matte finish that doesn’t reflect light.