McLaren may soon say goodbye to windscreen wipers and hello to ultrasonic force fields. Yup, the old invention from the turn of the last century may be getting replaced at last.
McLaren’s automotive chief designer Frank Stephenson told The Sunday Times the motoring company is looking into ultrasonic force fields right now referring to a military source for the technology.
At the moment there is very little to be found publicly on the technology but patents suggest it will likely use ultrasonic vibrations to create a wave-like movement across the screen which carries away water and dirt. It could also use the heat created from those vibrations to heat the screen clearing it of ice and snow. The ultrasonic pulses would likely vary in size and timing so the waves remove dirt, water and ice of all sizes.
McLaren may even go as far as using phased array focus. This would have receivers all around the window so, almost like sonar, the location of dirt can be fed back. Then more violent and varied vibrations can be focused on the areas that need it until they are clear.
How McLaren will do it exactly, and when this will come to market is anybody’s guess. But we’re confident that if anyone is going to get it perfect first time it’s McLaren. And then it can start filtering down to other cars that the rest of us can actually afford.
Skip to 1 minute and 50 seconds to see the ultrasonic vibrations in action below.