Research Frontiers CEO, Joseph M. Harary, presented the benefits of SPD-SmartGlass to the Automotive Industry at the 5th International CTI Automotive Glazing USA conference in Novi, Michigan, USA.
Mr. Harary’s address was focused on a real-world analysis of the use, benefits and reliability of SPD-SmartGlass in automotive and other glazings. SPD-SmartGlass technology, which allows users to instantly vary the tint of glass or plastic, is currently being used in the automotive, aircraft, marine, architectural, museum and consumer electronics industries. Some of the benefits include significant heat reduction inside the vehicle (by up to 10ºC), UV protection, glare control, reduced noise and reduced fuel consumption.
Independent calculations also show that use of SPD-SmartGlass can reduce CO2 emissions by four grams per kilometre, reduce the size of air conditioners by up to 40 percent, and increase the driving range of electric vehicles by approximately 5.5 percent. In addition, using SPD-SmartGlass in the windshield can create dynamically controlled sun-visors that make drivers more comfortable and increase safety.
“There is a noticeable and growing use of SPD-SmartGlass in the automotive industry. In addition to my presentation at the most recent automotive glass conference in Germany, auto manufacturers and their Tier-1 suppliers there focused their presentations as well on the benefits of SPD-SmartGlass in vehicles. Since then more vehicles have appeared at international auto shows using SPD-SmartGlass technology to make these cars run more efficiently, travel further, and make their occupants safer and more comfortable.” noted Joe Harary, President and CEO of Research Frontiers.
He added “This presentation comes at time when the adoption of our SPD-SmartGlass light-control technology in the automotive industry is accelerating. In March it was announced that McLaren Automotive had adopted SPD-SmartGlass for use in the sunroofs of two of their models in serial production which were on display at the Geneva Auto Show that month. Separately, at the New York Auto Show in April, two additional electric vehicles were featured using SPD-SmartGlass, and additional automotive OEMs are expected to use SPD-SmartGlass for cars in serial production beginning next year.”
For years, SPD-SmartGlass has demonstrated its performance and reliability on various models from Daimler. The MAGIC SKY CONTROL feature, which is now in use on tens of thousands of Mercedes-Benz SLs, SLKs, SLCs, Maybach and S-Class models around the world, uses patented SPD-SmartGlass technology developed by Research Frontiers to turn the roof transparent by electrically aligning tiny particles in a thin film within the glass. Now McLaren Automotive has introduced SPD-SmartGlass on multiple car models in the roof and other areas of the vehicle. With the touch of a button, drivers and passengers can instantly change the tint of their roof or other windows to help keep out harsh sunlight and heat, and create an open-air feeling even when the sunroof is closed.
Glass or plastic using Research Frontiers’ patented SPD-SmartGlass technology effectively blocks UV and infrared rays in both clear and darkly tinted modes, helping keep the cabin cooler, and protecting passengers and interiors. These benefits become even more important when a car uses large surface areas of glass, especially in warm climates.
SPD-Smart technology has proven itself in many aspects, from durability and performance, to sales. Before putting cars into serial production, Mercedes-Benz put the MAGIC SKY CONTROL roof using SPD-SmartGlass technology through rigorous durability and performance testing in some of the most extreme conditions on Earth. This included testing in the arctic cold of Scandinavia (with temperatures below -30ºC) and the blistering desert heat of Death Valley, California (with temperatures exceeding 50ºC). MAGIC SKY CONTROL blocks over 99 percent of harmful UV radiation and substantially reduces heat inside the vehicle.
Test data published by Mercedes-Benz shows the ability of the roof to reduce sun exposure to 1/20th of direct exposure levels (from over 1,000 watts/square metre to less than 50 watts/square metre). When compared to conventional automotive glass, Mercedes-Benz reported that the use of SPD-SmartGlass significantly reduces the temperature inside the vehicle by up to 10ºC. This increases passenger comfort and reduces air conditioning loads, thereby saving fuel and reducing CO2 emissions.