AQUAPEL GLASS TREATMENT

By: Shadow Tinting  09-12-2011

With Aquapel Hydrophobic Glass treatment from Shadow Tinting.

See Clearly. Drive Safer. Longer.

Windshields coated with Aquapel Hydrophobic glass treatment ("Treated" side, left) improve a driver’s ability to see clearly and drive safer because the treatment bonds with the glass and outlasts other glass treatments by as much as six times. Aquapel Glass Treatment uses technology innovated for the aviation industry by PPG Industries, leaders in glass technology.

When applied to a vehicle windshield, this product improves vision in the rain, day and night. Aquapel forms a chemical bond with glass unlike other products that simply coat glass to increase water repellency, causing it to bead and easily shed off the glass. As a result, Aquapel can last up to 6 times longer. Additionally, Aquapel Hydrophobic Glass Treatment remains highly effective after months of normal use, including driving in rain and snow, car washing, and glass cleaning.

Once you’ve driven with Aquapel Hydrophobic Glass Treatment, you won’t want to drive without it.

How it Works

Using technology innovated for the aviation industry, Aquapel Hydrophobic Glass Treatment forms a chemical bond with the glass which increases water repellency, causing water to bead and easily shed off the glass. These fluorinated compounds when applied on any exterior glass surface last longer than silicone-based products.

Aquapel Hydrophobic Glass Treatment remains highly effective after months of normal use, including heavy rain and snow, car washing, glass cleaning and salt spray. Even bug removal becomes effortless with Aquapel.

Aquapel provides you with an amazingly clear view.

Shadow Tinting will ensure a proper and thorough application in about 15-30 minutes. For less than the cost of an oil change, you can guarantee a clear view in any weather condition. Ask us about Aquapel glass treatment from Shadow Tinting.

Here is some Test data on Hydrophobic Glass Treatments

THE INFLUENCE OF HYDROPHOBIC WINDSHIELD COATING ON DRIVER VISUAL PERFORMANCE by the University of Michigan.

This experiment evaluated potential benefits of hydrophobic coating of windshields under simulated conditions of use. The main independent variables were hydrophobic treatment, participant age, and time of day. The dependent measures were minimum visual angle resolved and response time. The results indicate that the hydrophobic coating improved visual performance, decreasing the minimum visual angle resolved by almost 34% and reducing the response time by more than one second. In practical terms, visual acuity improved in the treated- nighttime condition to approximately the level of acuity in the untreated-daytime condition. This experiment showed that hydrophobic coatings can result in significantly improved driver visual performance without negatively affecting response time. However, this experiment did not address the durability or longevity of these products, as the hydrophobic coating was only tested when it was newly applied (and therefore could be expected to be near peak performance).

INTRODUCTION

Several hydrophobic coating products for motor vehicle windows are commercially available. Hydrophobic coatings are generally liquid polymers that bind with motor vehicle glazing. These transparent coatings act as water repellents, causing rain, and other accumulated moisture, to bead up. Aided by airflow caused by wind and vehicle motion, the resulting beads of water runoff the vehicle’s windshield and other windows. The beading and ease with which the beads are cleared are thought to lead to improved driver visual performance due to reduced optical distortion. In other words, not having to look through a sheet of moisture should result in a clearer image.

Most, if not all, of the commercially available hydrophobic coating products claim to aid drivers’ visual performance. Yet, there exists no research in the open literature to substantiate the · claims of improved visual performance, or any other benefits for that matter, associated with the use of hydrophobic coatings on the windshields of motor vehicles. While there are instances of specific product evaluations in popular magazines, these evaluations only provide anecdotal support for improved visual performance. The anecdotal support is largely in the form of improved visibility through the windshield, even without the use of windshield wipers, as well as visibility benefits when applied to the side and rear windows (which generally lack wiper mechanisms).

The purpose of this experiment was to quantify the effects of this class of products on visual performance under simulated conditions of use. More specifically, this experiment examines the minimum visual angle resolved and response time to targets viewed through a motor vehicle windshield for the following main independent variables:

  • Hydrophobic treatment (treated versus untreated)
  • Time of day (daytime versus nighttime)
  • Participant age

This experiment was performed under conditions of simulated rain and simulated wind effects associated with vehicle motion. Although the effects under real driving/raining conditions may differ from those obtained under the simulated conditions, the directions of the effects can be expected to be the same. Visual acuity is one of several possible measures of visual performance that could have been investigated in this study.

Although the specific task used in this experiment is probably a relatively pure measure of visual acuity, participants were not given time limits for individual trials. Because of the dynamic character of the stimulus situation (including simulated wind and rain, as well as the action of windshield wipers) it is probably possible for participants to improve their performance by allowing more observation time to each trial. Therefore response time was measured, as well as minimum visual angle resolved, to that we had a comprehensive measure of relative visual performance across conditions.

This experiment did not address the durability or longevity of these products, as the hydrophobic coating was only tested when it was newly applied (and therefore could be expected to be near peak performance). The effects of hydrophobic coatings on driver visual acuity are likely to diminish with time and wear (more or less slowly, depending on durability).

Participants viewed the targets while seated in either the driver’s or the passenger’s seat of a research vehicle, a 1992 compact with 36,000 km on the odometer. The center of the target was 1200 mm above the asphalt surface, and in line with the center of the vehicle. The target was therefore approximately 0.5 degrees to the right of straight ahead when the participant was seated on the driver’s side, and 0.5 degrees to the left of straight ahead when the participant was seated on the passenger’s side. These materials were selected in order to simulate the appearance of roadway signs.

Rain and wind were simulated in this experiment. Rain was simulated by spraying water onto the vehicle's windshield. The resulting coverage was uniform over the area of the windshield through which participants could view the target. The rate at which water was applied could be varied. Levels of water flow appeared to be comparable to that experienced while driving in a natural, moderate—to—heavy rainfall. In order to simulate the wind, which normally aids in removing the beaded water from the windshield of a vehicle in motion, two leaf blowers were mounted on the front of the vehicle. These blowers produced a wind speed of about 58 km/h (36 mph), as measured on the exterior of the windshield at the participants line of sight to the target. The apparatus for the simulated rain and wind could be positioned on either the driver’s or passenger’s side of the vehicle. It was positioned low on the hood in order not to obstruct the participants view of the target or of the glare from headlamps in the nighttime testing.

The purpose of this experiment was to quantify the effects of hydrophobic treatment on visual performance under simulated conditions of use. It was believed the hydrophobic treatment would influence visual performance, more specifically the minimum visual angle resolved. However, the visual acuity task used here is likely to be affected · both by the participants fundamental visual acuity, and the amount of time devoted to the task. By measuring the response time to targets, in both treated and untreated conditions, it was possible to evaluate whether any apparent differences in acuity could be attributed to differences in subjects’ self-imposed time limits.

RESULTS

Response Time. The response times of participants recognition task were shorter when performed with a hydrophobic-ally treated windshield (mean = 3.0 s) than for the same task in the untreated condition (mean = 4.2 s)

DISCUSSION

The application of hydrophobic treatment to the windshield of an automobile, under simulated rainy-driving conditions, resulted in significantly improved visual acuity and decreased response time to recognize a simple target. The improvement in response time was, on average, greater than one second: equivalent to more than 27 m of travel at 100 km/h. The improvement in visual acuity was also rather large (approximately 34% in terms of the minimum visual angle resolved).

CONCLUSION

This experiment evaluated potential visual acuity benefits of hydrophobic coating products under simulated conditions of use. In general, this experiment showed that these products appear to significantly improve driver visual acuity and response time. However, this experiment did not address the durability or longevity of these products, as the hydrophobic coating was only tested when it was expected to be near peak performance. Therefore the benefits associated with hydrophobic coatings that were demonstrated here may diminish with time and wear, more or less slowly, depending on the durability of different hydrophobic treatments. Additional testing, under Real-world driving conditions, where actual precipitation and durability are examined, would be desirable.


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