There’s no doubt that windscreen wipers detract from the overall appearance of a car. That problem is exacerbated in supercars with the generally ugly windscreen wipers breaking up what would otherwise be perfectly flowing lines. However, as we all know, they serve an important role for everyday driving but according to McLaren, they may not be the be all and end all for keeping windscreens clean.
According to McLaren’s chief designer Frank Stephenson, the company is currently working on a system to emit high-frequency sound waves across the windscreen to keep it free of all debris. Similar systems are utilised on advanced fighter jets.
He then expanded to say that an ultrasonic transducer could be fitted to the screen which would emit 30 kHz soundwaves. The system could be so effective that it could deflect snow and insects acting as a virtual force field for the windscreen!
The advantages of such a system wouldn’t be just visual. Stephenson says that it could improve aerodynamics while also reducing the weight of the car without the necessary windscreen wiper motors.
So how long do we have to wait to see window wiper-less cars? Well, don’t expect developments any time soon. Such a system would be years away for even high-end cars like McLarens let alone everyday vehicles, but it is still an exciting prospect.