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June 12, 2012

New Warp-Free Mirror Eliminates Blind Spots

Cars just keep getting safer and safer. Sometimes the changes are major and something completely new, such as airbags, and sometimes they are an improvement of a safety feature that has been around for some time, such as a new mirror that gives an extremely wide field of view without warping its picture.

This mirror, developed by Drexel University mathematics professor Andrew R. Hicks, eliminates the blind spots that have been a hazard since that first mirror was bolted to racer Ray Harroun’s Indy 500 car in 1911. Hicks’ driver’s side mirror gives a 45 degree view of what is behind a vehicle. This is a huge improvement on the 16-something degrees that the mirrors of today offer.

Talking about how his mirror works, Hicks said it was designed to make use of a new algorithm “so that each ray of light bouncing off the mirror shows the driver a wide, but not-too-distorted, picture of the scene behind him.”

While Hicks already has plans to produce his safe mirror for European and Asian markets, current federal law in the land of the free prevents him, or anyone, from selling mirrors for drivers that are not completely flat.

Thanks to Car Loans Pennsylvania for this tip.

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