Rapidly De-Icing Windshields
With the recent resurgence of interest in all things green and eco-friendly, solar energy from photovoltaic cells is gaining popularity yet again. Now we figure the last thing on your mind is de-icing windshields with this June weather. However, this technology is something to get excited about and should make struggling with icy windshields a thing of the past!
New technology is being developed by Jeffrey Grossman and his team in their MIT laboratory creating solar thermal fuel, which is a fuel triggered by light to store energy then transform that energy to heat. This “fuel” is embedded into the windshield of BMWs. Using that heat generated by solar energy, the fuel can rapidly and efficiently melt ice on windshields in the wintertime.
Grossman says, “This forced us to think about this fuel in a way we hadn’t before, as a solid layer between two pieces of glass.” Grossman is a professor of materials science and engineering who developed this technology due to his own encounters with scraping ice off his own windshield during the brutal cold early this winter.
Conversations first began in April about this project between Jennifer Dungs, who works in research and development at BMW and the university. A functional prototype is hoped to be in the works during the summer.
Anyone who lives in a chilly climate can testify to the annoyance and potential danger of chipping away at an icy windshield, with heaters on full blast, in freezing temperatures. A swiftly de-icing windshield would take a lot of the hassle out of the necessary task. This technology also aids electrics cars whose range would be significantly decreased due to blasting the heater for a lengthy amount of time without the technology.
Stay tuned to Bill Jacobs BMW for more information about this great technology.