Say what you want about Tesla, but have some absolutely insane ideas. Back in 2019, Tesla filed a patent for laser beam cleaning, and it has just been approved this week.
The full name of the patent is “Pulsed Laser Cleaning of Accumulated Garbage on Glass Objects in Vehicles and Photovoltaic Assemblies”, which suggests its use for solar panels as well. This makes sense since the accumulation of dirt is a big problem when it comes to photovoltaic (PV) solar cells. The system will have sensors that detect when dirt builds up and beats a laser until the dirt burns.
The use of pulse lasers helps reduce damage to any other subject, by reducing the intensity of the laser. The patent states that the wrist “limits the penetration of the laser beam to a depth that is less than the thickness of the glass object,” so the driver doesn’t have to worry. Anyway, if these lasers are strong enough to burn dirt, then hopefully they are properly calibrated. This can be a concern, as Tesla is not known exactly for the quality and reliability of their perfect building.
Replacing the current and accepted design for windshield wipers is a nice idea, but some called it their bluff, saying the idea is simply unattainable right now. Critics have called it a ‘speculative patent’, which is a patent that seeks to benefit from a future implementation of the idea without providing any practical solution. We have yet to show a practical demonstration of laser wipers.
Since the Cybertruck has not been seen with any wipers, laser beams may be the method to go with it in the final design. However, Tesla has applied for another patent that is much more practical: electromagnetic wipers.
Tesla seems dissatisfied with the conventional wiper design. In the electromagnetic wiper patent, they say “Conventional windshield wiper systems that use multiple wiper blades usually have a cluttered design and don’t clean the windshield enough, which can disrupt the unobstructed field of view of the passage forward. “
Their proposed design uses only a single wiper blade that moves side to side, powered by a linear actuator. Apparently, this is more energy efficient and minimizes friction.
Other Tesla patents have been filed, such as the idea of using lasers to bend glass structures, but we have to wait and see if Tesla actually turns any of these ideas into reality.[ SOURCE, 2, 3, IMAGE SOURCE ]