A car that glides through traffic by itself is probably one of the most popular science fiction fantasies of all time. Michael Rosenauer and Jörg Strauß are working to make the vision of self-driving cars a reality − with success. OSRAM lighting solutions, such as infrared lights, optical semiconductors, laser lights and sensors, play a key role in mobility of the future.

“I grew up with Knight Rider, so of course I have a certain fascination with autonomous driving,” says Michael Rosenauer, who is a fan of innovative technologies. He is happy that passion for this topic is clearly shared by other members on his team. “Everyone ­is all about it, and that drives development forward,” he says. It is a good thing too, since there is no stopping the onset of autonomous driving. “But it is only now really getting under way for users,” Jörg Strauß says. “The fact that you can already leave the vehicle to its own devices nowadays in stop-and-go traffic is an indication of things to come.”

“I grew up with Knight Rider, so of course I have a certain fascination with autonomous driving.” Dr. Michael Rosenauer, Head of Product ­Development at SP ­Automotive Laser

OSRAM is one of the main players when it comes to autonomous driving, a fact that both engineers are sure of. “After all, we provide the technologies that make the smart car possible in the first place, such as light-based transmitters, sensors, systems and solutions,” Rosenauer explains. “OSRAM is a pioneer without being starry-eyed. We are breaking away from the hype in the industry with serious components and solutions that can be widely used,” Strauß adds. Autonomous driving will change the way people live and make it better.


Welcome to the world of Knight Rider! While we do not have to jump straight to hunting down criminals with our self-driving cars, we will enjoy greater safety, convenience and time that we can put to good use while sitting in a car. And where will this journey lead in the future? Michael Rosenauer answers with certainty: “Autonomous driving will already become the norm for our children, and our grandchildren might even wonder what a steering wheel is. Things will remain interesting in the meantime, however. The market is experiencing a radical change, and we are leading the way.”

“Autonomous driving will make our lives a lot easier − greater mobility, safety, convenience and time.” Dr. Jörg Strauß, Head of the Emitter Laser Sensor Segment at OS


  • Level 0 Only the driver drives.
  • Level 1 Assistance systems help operate the vehicle.
  • Level 2 Assistance systems take over individual driving functions, such as parking.
  • Level 3* High degree of automation. The driver does not have to constantly monitor the system.
  • Level 4 Complete automation. The vehicle drives itself. The driver is requested to take over in individual cases.
  • Level 5 No driver necessary.

* Current state of the art