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Canadian Researchers Develop Permanent Anti-Fog Coating

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the what-would-you-use-it-for? dept.

Canada 146

cylonlover writes "Tired of your glasses fogging up on cold days, or of having to spit in your dive mask before putting it on? Those hassles may become a thing of the past, as researchers from Quebec City's Université Laval have developed what they claim is the world's first permanent anti-fog coating. Just one application is said to work indefinitely on eyeglasses, windshields, camera lenses, or any other transparent glass or plastic surface."

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146 comments

Have they heard about bandages? (3, Interesting)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527112)

Re:Have they heard about bandages? (1)

atari2600a (1892574) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527188)

I wonder if silicone beads work the same in goggles

Re:Have they heard about bandages? (1)

bemymonkey (1244086) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527276)

You mean those packets of DO NOT EAT that we all have laying around?

Dunno, isn't it a short step from DO NOT EAT to DO NOT PUT IN EYES?

Re:Have they heard about bandages? (3, Funny)

atari2600a (1892574) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527418)

It's not like I said to remove it from it's original packaging, grind into a fine paste, & apply topically to your cornea...

Re:Have they heard about bandages? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35527420)

Don't need to put them in your eyes though - build a bridge just above the nose of the goggles. Side mounted vents with a cotton cover, some kind of clip frame so you can change the sachet, and there you go. ...

Maybe I should patent that? :)

Re:Have they heard about bandages? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35528128)

Too late, just did...

Re:Have they heard about bandages? (1)

Dragonslicer (991472) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528776)

Dunno, isn't it a short step from DO NOT EAT to DO NOT PUT IN REMAINING EYE?

Fixed that for you.

Re:Have they heard about bandages? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35529886)

Yeah, except most stuff you see on YouTube doesn't actually work, just like bandages.

Swimming goggles (1)

lul_wat (1623489) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527158)

Swimming goggles would be a go for this. Every time I see someone spitting into them in the pool I want to drown them.

Re:Swimming goggles (1)

Kokuyo (549451) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527230)

Why? Do you truly believe a swimming pool would be saliva-free if it weren't for those people?

Re:Swimming goggles (5, Funny)

itsdapead (734413) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527344)

...but all that saliva spoils the taste of the chlorine, urine, dead skin cells and dilute human faeces...

Re:Swimming goggles (2)

1u3hr (530656) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527492)

Every time I see someone spitting into them in the pool I want to drown them.

Right, Because having someone spit INSIDE their goggles pollutes the pool. Unlike those swimming with their mouths open. Or those standing quietly taking a piss.

Re:Swimming goggles (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35527858)

You know, if you're THAT concerned about the water in your pool not being 100% pure, maybe you shouldn't go swimming in public pools in the first place.

Re:Swimming goggles (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528140)

spit is the least of your worries, you know how much piss and ass matter is in that water?

Re:Swimming goggles (1)

Plekto (1018050) | more than 3 years ago | (#35530938)

That's why our grandparents were so disease and cold resistant, though. All of that time growing up at the local lake or pond with god-knows-what in it.

Re:Swimming goggles (1)

bmo (77928) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529868)

Q: Why do they put chlorine in the pool?
A: Because Mark Spitz

Thank you, thank you, I'll be here all evening. Please, try the veal and tip your waitress.

--
BMO

sure... (2)

YoshiDan (1834392) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527164)

Just like the "scratch proof" and "anti glare" coatings they ripped me off for when I bought my glasses. Neither work!

Re:sure... (2)

semi-extrinsic (1997002) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527208)

I agree about anti-glare, that wears off pretty fast, especially if you use anything but water and a lens cloth to clean your glasses.

But the scratch proof stuff is truly magic! I had a chance to compare my eight year old glasses with some cheap glasses one of my relatives' children had, and man, was there a world of difference. And I'm not really careful with my glasses either, I've lost them tons of times when playing football or skiing.

Re:sure... (1)

YoshiDan (1834392) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527224)

Mine have the scratchproof coating and they are scratched to shit and they're only 6 months old :( I'm fairly careful with them too... Not to mention that the coating bubbles sometimes; I had that problem with my old glasses.

Re:sure... (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527270)

Your glasses should come with a multi-year delaminating damage warranty if they come with specialized coatings.

Re:sure... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35527486)

Which the industry will make sure, if you try and claim it, will cost you more than a new pair of glasses. Optometry is one big closed scam, these days. Yet another example of how noone is trying to maintain a competitive market.

Re:sure... (3, Informative)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528166)

http://www.zennioptical.com/ [zennioptical.com]

I get decent quality stuff on the midgrade lenses for the price the optometrist pays.. whenever I get a new set of glasses, I order 3 more sets from this place.

Nothing like having 2 sets of spares and one set of "grunge glasses" to use when getting sweaty or really dirty to keep the expensive nice ones looking new.

Re:sure... (1)

kyrio (1091003) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529058)

If 'noone' is trying to maintain a competitive market, who is trying to stop him in order to create the scam?

Re:sure... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35527868)

My experience is that it depends on the retailer. When I bought my current Specsavers glasses I asked about warranty protection should my lenses become scratched, and I was told that they're marketed as 'scratch resistent', not 'scratch proof', and so scratches wouldn't be covered.

On the other hand, my previous pair were from D&A, and one of the lenses suffered a very deep scratch right in the centre of my field of vision just under a year after I bought them. I didn't even have to ask about the warranty (I didn't actually know about it), they offered to repair it for free.

Re:sure... (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529448)

When I bought my current Specsavers glasses I asked about warranty protection...

I nearly stopped reading at that point, but courtesy prevailed. :-)

Specsavers, Just Spectacles and all those other two-for-the-price-of-one bandits are the biggest lot of crooks unhung. A few years back when I was more ignorant as to what to expect from an optometrist, I went to Just Spectacles (in Hay St., Perth Western Australia), when I realised my vision wasn't so great. Since my health insurance is generous, I returned the next year and bought a new set of glasses, new lenses for the old frames and a pair of prescription sunglasses.

They fucked up every single pair. Some lenses arrived scratched, and others just did not fit the frames properly. I sent them all back twice, with the same result, then gave up and went to Abernethy Owens nearby.

It was then that I found out that their prescription wasn't all that accurate, and that the optometrist had not performed any of the usual checks for health of the eyes. They do charge like a wounded bull for your glasses, but the prescription is better and they look after you.

I've looked at buying glasses online occasionally, but while the choice of frames is sometimes adequate (never great), the choice of lens material is poor. I know it is unfashionable to say so, but you get what you pay for.

Re:sure... (1)

omglolbah (731566) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527280)

All coatings are not equal. I've had some bad ones, but the current glasses are damn nice.

Expensive as hell though... about 500 bucks per lense. (-10.5 / -10.75)

Re:sure... (1)

AJH16 (940784) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528832)

Agreed on that, I had historically always gotten cheap polarized sunglasses and had them die on me annually from the frame breaking and the lenses being all scratched to hell even with their "scratch-proof" coating. I finally got tired of it and got a nice pair of Native sunglasses. They ran me $150 but I've never had a pair of sunglasses that was as comfortable, durable and the scratch-proof coating really works. I have had them over a year now and if I wipe them off, I can't tell they aren't brand new. (And I treated them exactly the same as the old pairs I used to get.)

Re:sure... (1)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529002)

If your prescription is -10.5/-10.75, $1000 a pair is steep but not outside the realm of feasible. $500 a pair, if that's what you meant, is cheap. (I'm a -13/-12.75.)

Re:sure... (1)

xaxa (988988) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527770)

My glasses are completely scratch-free, they're about 18 months old. I think the anti-glare coating is fine too.

I'm careful-ish with them. I rarely drop them, but I often clean them just by rubbing them on my clothes. They were about £80 (or maybe £40, I can't remember if I got two pairs for the price of one), but they're only -1.25-ish diopters.

Maybe ask friends and colleagues for a recommendation? A few people have recommended online companies (you just give them your prescription), though I haven't used one myself.

Re:sure... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528150)

Decent anti glare will last forever unless you clean with sandpaper.

The cheap crap that is on the garbage lenses (yes if you paid less than $260.00 a lens your glasses are garbage) does wear off and smear and scratch easily. but the good stuff on the high end super thin lenses is a miracle. I even have the dirt repelling coating and it's amazing how much cleaner the lenses stay.

Re:sure... (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528436)

I have no idea what their manufacturing quality is, but Zenni Optical charges between $20 and $80 to upgrade both lenses to higher refractive index materials (photochromatics push that towards $180 for both).

Even if Zenni is really bad, it seems like there might be some markup in that $520.

Re:sure... (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529544)

Decent anti glare will last forever unless you clean with sandpaper.

Incidentally, by far the best way to clean your glasses is not to bother with any of those stupid little spray-bottles or wipes.

Simply use warm dihydrogen monoxide straight from the tap with a good hand soap and your fingers to clean lenses and frames, rinse and wipe off gently with a Kleenex (and NOT scratchy recycled paper loo-roll).

Re:sure... (1)

Zorpheus (857617) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527658)

Dunno what they sell you, but the scratch-proof anti-glare coating of my glasses is still finee after 3 years. And I am not treating my glasses well.
Might be a result of German customer rights. If these coatings would not last for two years, this would fall under waranty and I would demand a replacement for the glasses.

Uhm... (1)

Superdarion (1286310) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527184)

From TFA:

The actual anti-fog coating itself is composed of polyvinyl alcohol, which is a hydrophilic compound that causes the individual droplets of condensation to disperse

Unless I'm waaaay off, I think they mean hydrophobic, as in "it doesn not bond with water".

Re:Uhm... (5, Informative)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527244)

From TFA:

The actual anti-fog coating itself is composed of polyvinyl alcohol, which is a hydrophilic compound that causes the individual droplets of condensation to disperse

Unless I'm waaaay off, I think they mean hydrophobic, as in "it doesn not bond with water".

Um, you are, indeed, way off.

A hydrophobic coating would cause condensation to coalesce into droplets minimizing contact area between the condensate and the surface. In other words, it would fog the surface: due to refraction and internal reflection, small water droplets in air are essentially opaque while large droplets act as distorting lenses.

A hydrophilic coating, on the other hand, causes the condensation to form a continuous film maximizing contact between the condensate and the surface. This would remain transparent and would not greatly distort images viewed through it unless the amount of condensate was very large.

Re:Uhm... (1)

eggled (1135799) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527252)

Yup. you're waaayy off. It's hydrophilic. Hence the "dispersing" and not "beading" of the water on the surface. Hence the anti-fog capabilities.

Re:Uhm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35529880)

From TFA:

The actual anti-fog coating itself is composed of polyvinyl alcohol, which is a hydrophilic compound that causes the individual droplets of condensation to disperse

Unless I'm waaaay off, I think they mean hydrophobic, as in "it doesn not bond with water".

You quite sure they don't mean hydrophobic, as in "rabid like a mad dog"?

polyvinyl alcohol? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35530598)

Does that mean I could use a little bit of fiberglass mold release agent? 'Cause that's what it is - PVA (or poly vinyl alcohol). I'll have to try it the next time I go diving...

wintersports and motorcycles (1)

dltaylor (7510) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527204)

PLEASE!!!

I'm one of those people who perspires walking in a blizzard.

I would pay quite a bit more for a working anti-fog coating than anything that is currently on the market, since they don't work very well for me. I need my snowboard-riding goggles, my motorcycle face shields (and, yes, I have ridden with snow all around; just don't ride on ice) , and ALL of my sunglasses coated.

Re:wintersports and motorcycles (1)

snowgirl (978879) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527584)

It doesn't even have to be snowing or cold enough for snowing for motorcycle face shields to fog up. If it's cold enough that you can "HAH!" onto a window and have it fog up, eventually your face shield is going to fog up. (Especially, while stopped!)

Anti-fog for motorcycle face shields is a SUPER must have in any weather at about 50 or colder.

Re:wintersports and motorcycles (1)

dltaylor (7510) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527614)

Tell me about it. (oh, you did).

I very often ride with the smallest face shield opening the helmet will latch. Still get fogging on the sunglasses underneath, though.

Re:wintersports and motorcycles (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529584)

Anti-fog for motorcycle face shields is a SUPER must have in any weather at about 50 or colder.

My face shield almost never fogs up at 50 degrees C.

Re:wintersports and motorcycles (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531036)

It's got nothing to do with the temperature, it's just that as the temp gets lower the carrying capacity of air gets lower and you get more condensation on the shield. I've personally seen my helmet fog up when the whether was well into the 80s. Which is why I promptly bought a permanent fog proof lens for my helmet.

Which is also why I'm a bit surprised that /. is this many years behind a permanent fog proof coating being developed. I got mine from Pinlock [pinlockusa.net]

Re:wintersports and motorcycles (1)

Inda (580031) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527808)

Motorbikes -

I used to wear an open face helmet, with removeable chin guard, foam face protector and googles. The idea was to keep my warm breath off the clear plastic I looked through. Think motor-X style.

No way perfect but better than a full helmet.

Re:wintersports and motorcycles (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528186)

Then buy the stuff we use for motorcycle helmets. I use "cat crap" and it's fantastic.

Re:wintersports and motorcycles (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35528214)

Make no mistake, this was invented for hockey visors. We are talking about Canada here.

Re:wintersports and motorcycles (1)

Unkyjar (1148699) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529730)

I'm one of those people who perspires walking in a blizzard.

You should stop walking in blizzards then. *nods sagely* *smokebomb* *flee*

Re:wintersports and motorcycles (2)

ShavedOrangutan (1930630) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529884)

Try Scott No-Fog cloth. Any cycle shop should carry it. You fog up the shield/goggles with your breath and then wipe it dry with the cloth. I've tried everything on the market and nothing compares. The semi-pro off road racers I've met use Rain-ex on the inside of their goggles, but even that didn't work for me.

Talk about perfect timing (1)

Tigger's Pet (130655) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527228)

I've just got out of my shower and can't see through my living-room windows as they've all fogged up. On the plus side - it's cold and wet outside, and I can't see it anymore!
However, to get back on topic, I think this is a seriously cool bit of tech if they can pull it off cheaply enough to enable it to be used widely. How many times have you got in your car in the winter, cleared the snow, turned the heaters on and promptly found that every window in the vehicle steams up so you can't see anyway - how useful would this be? Hell, I'd quite happily pay to have this coating added to my car - much better use of my money than tinting the windows.

Re:Talk about perfect timing (2)

mcvos (645701) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527760)

I've just got out of my shower and can't see through my living-room windows as they've all fogged up.

That's incredibly convenient if your neighbours live close enough to look into your living room.

Re:Talk about perfect timing (1)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529052)

If your heater is working, shouldn't the windows clear quickly?

much better use of my money than tinting the windows

If it snows enough that you need to clear it off your car, you probably don't need tinted windows in the summer.

Re:Talk about perfect timing (1)

Stewie241 (1035724) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529958)

In cold climates it can get quite hot in the summer.

Compare:
http://www.theweathernetwork.com/statistics/CL6158350/caon0696 [theweathernetwork.com] - Toronto weather
http://www.theweathernetwork.com/statistics/C02744/usca0982 [theweathernetwork.com] - San Diego weather

The summer highs aren't that different.

Re:Talk about perfect timing (1)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531108)

25 C isn't hot; it's barely even warm - and those temperatures in SD are from the airport, which is right on the (cold) water. Yes, it does occasionally get very hot in Toronto, but then again it occasionally snows in Montgomery, Alabama. A better comparison would be to, say, Las Vegas, where the average summer high is about the same as the record high for Toronto. Latitude is also important - outside temperatures are much less important than the intensity of sunlight shining in.

Problem is dirt (5, Informative)

snsh (968808) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527400)

The difficulty with anti-fog surfaces is keeping it clean. For glasses/sunglasses this isn't so hard since you can easily clean the lenses in a sink with soap. For the inside surface of a car windshield it's a totally different story. In most cars the inside windshield fogs up mostly because it's dirty. The windshield glass itself is hydrophilic enough that it wouldn't be fogging up a lot, but there's a layer of goop on the glass that's hydrophobic which fogs up easily. The goop resembles a mix of everything you ever smell inside the car (new car smell, old car smell, exhaust fumes, McDonalds, Starbucks, bad breath). If you try super-thoroughly cleaning one half the windshield, and not clean the other half, you'll get an idea of how bad it is.

Re:Problem is dirt (2)

jamesh (87723) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527428)

If you try super-thoroughly cleaning one half the windshield, and not clean the other half, you'll get an idea of how bad it is.

Got any tips for cleaning the glass? Whenever I try it just seems to move the layer of muck around, and I only notice that I've done a crappy job when the sun is shining in on the right angle.

Re:Problem is dirt (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35527488)

Washing up liquid. Moisten a cloth, apply a small amount of washing up liquid, scrub the surface. Repeat until the whole surface is done. Then completely wrinse out the cloth, dampen it again without any washing up liquid and clean the surface again, to get rid of any remaining dirt and washing up liquid.

Re:Problem is dirt (5, Informative)

velinion (582423) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527510)

1/4 cup vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon liquid soap or detergent, and 2 cups of water in a spray bottle.

Spray on window, and rub vigorously with terry cloth. Works wonders.

Re:Problem is dirt (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35527512)

I too have this same issue. I really wish I could find a way to clean it more effectively.

Re:Problem is dirt (4, Informative)

snsh (968808) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527540)

I take a bottle of standard glass cleaner (ammonia + surfactant) and 5% alcohol and 5% acetone. On a warm day in the shade with the doors open, wear gloves, hold your breath, spray on a crumpled newspaper and use that to clean.

Re:Problem is dirt (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528554)

I think the "warm day in the shade" advice is what's most useful here. The newspaper advice is BAD, though, because they don't really print newspapers worth a crap and they leave ink on your windshield. At least, any newspaper I can get my hands on does. I usually use paper towels because they are absorbent and because all my cotton rags rapidly end up greasy and thus utterly unsuitable for windshield cleaning... because I don't just clean, I fix stuff too.

Re:Problem is dirt (1)

hawkfish (8978) | more than 3 years ago | (#35530628)

I think the "warm day in the shade" advice is what's most useful here. The newspaper advice is BAD, though, because they don't really print newspapers worth a crap and they leave ink on your windshield. At least, any newspaper I can get my hands on does. I usually use paper towels because they are absorbent and because all my cotton rags rapidly end up greasy and thus utterly unsuitable for windshield cleaning... because I don't just clean, I fix stuff too.

I had a friend many years ago who worked construction. He said that they always used newspaper to clean the windows because it did not leave dust. I have tried this and found it to be true, but I always wondered about the ink. Still, it seemed to work and any ink residue was not noticeable, but the lack of lint most definitely was.

Re:Problem is dirt (2)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527566)

I used a pack of window cleaning wipes when I bought my car (used) and it worked pretty well. I dried with a clean cloth (better to use one that isn't going to leave little fibers everywhere) after to get rid of any residue. Make sure not to get any finger oils on the part of the cloth you're going to dry the window with otherwise it will obviously just end up greasy.

If you've got really thick muck, then I'd say give the windows a good old fashioned clean with soapy water once or twice, drying with a towel after each wash. The towel will help to collect up loosened muck that's still sticking to the screen before you go to the next layer. Then you can go with the special window wipes or glass cleaning fluid.

Re:Problem is dirt (1)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528272)

That was a good question actually. I just recently obtained my driver's license and a car so this is something I too should probably learn. Since you've gotten already several nice responces I'm just gonna thank you for posing the question in the first place :)

Elbow Grease (1)

jdevivre (923797) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528514)

Use any of the other methods here, or any window cleaner, then get a clean dry cloth and work it. Push hard, polish the glass. Transparency.

This is by far the best way to clean mirrors too, reducing the frequency of using any cleaner at all. Polishing usually does the trick.
At the very least, it'll give some of you a little exercise.

Re:Problem is dirt (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528642)

It's a massive, massive PITA. The easiest way to do it is to spend a lot of time getting it clean, and then just keep it clean. If your windshield's super-filthy (it almost certainly is), use Windex or detergent-water for the first cleaning (unless you have tint over your whole windscreen, in which case you skip to the next step and add lots of elbow grease). This isn't going to get it anywhere near the surgical-clean you need to keep fog at bay.

From there, clean with a damp paper towel (don't let your fingers touch the glass!) and dry it really well with a dry paper towel (you can use wet and dry sides of the same wad once you get the bulk of the dirt off). If the outside of the windshield is freshly washed, you'll know it's clean enough when the glass looks super-clean close up. It's when your friends say "wow your windshield is SO CLEAN!"

Now if this is a closed-cabin car and you drive with the windows up, it could stay clean enough for 6 months or more. If it's an open car, well you might have bought yourself a few weeks. On my open jeep I used a product called Fog-X by the same company that makes Rain-X, which helped keep the fog at bay a little longer, but you had to keep cleaning the windshield with that stuff so it might not be worth it if you don't live in a super-wet environment.

Re:Problem is dirt (1)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529102)

Glass cleaners like Windex are pretty good at dissolving the goop, but damp paper towels (followed by dry paper towels or terry cloth) are needed afterward to wipe the detergent residue off. This works wonders for the windows in your house, too. And paper towels and water are really the only things I use to clean my monitor and televisions, unless there's some really stubborn deposit.

Re:Problem is dirt (1)

hcdejong (561314) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529020)

For glasses/sunglasses this isn't so hard since you can easily clean the lenses in a sink with soap.

Uh, do you actually wear glasses? Mine need cleaning every day, and I'm not going to take the time to do it in a sink. I mostly use a soft cloth instead.

Canadian researchers... (1)

a_hanso (1891616) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527464)

Why is it that when the discovery is made by Canadians, it appears in the story title?

Re:Canadian researchers... (1)

Tigger's Pet (130655) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527480)

If you read the summary;-
"researchers from Quebec City's Université Laval" - That's in Canada
and if you read TFA;-
"Prof. Gaétan Laroche of Laval's Faculty of Sciences and Engineering led the research" - He's a French-Canadian.

Hence - "Canadian Researchers Develop Permanent Anti-Fog Coating". Clear enough?

Re:Canadian researchers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35527950)

Possibly because /. is US-centric? Clears any ambiguity, so when people don't RTFA, they aren't all: U-S-A! U-S-A!

Re:Canadian researchers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35530258)

They have a greater need for anti-frog systems in Canada. Something to do with all the fresh water.

Also, if it were American researchers, the title would just name the university, with the expectation that people would know where it is. If the headline had said "Laval Researchers Develop Anti-Frog Coating", it would just have confused people.

Re:Canadian researchers... (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531088)

Probably because this has already been invented. I've got a really nice permanent anti-fog lens for my motorcycle helmet, and it'll easily outlast the helmet itself, which is as permanent as I could use.

Hate to be pedantic but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35527476)

indefinitely != permanently

Why is this permanent? (1)

jpeaton (1452703) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527680)

OK, from the actual article (http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/am1010964 [acs.org] ), the researchers made a polymeric coating on glass surfaces. They proved that it can resist 24hrs immersion in water. how does this mean that it is "permanent"?? It could be easily removed by repeated cleaning procedures, which is the major problem with current antifog coatings as well. Secondly, the idea that it will work with ANY plastic surface is ludicrous...since they only made it on glass..I can think of many polymers it is unlikely to work with. But I don't KNOW because I did not try it either!

Re:Why is this permanent? (1)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528286)

I suppose they mean 'permanent' in the sense that is it doesn't wear off by itself, you need to actively scrub it off to remove it. That is indeed quite a good definition of permanent in the sense that you most likely consider for example house paint permanent, but it too comes off if you actively scrub it long enough.

Re:Why is this permanent? (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529488)

Well they are depositing a silicon layer on to the surface, which is pretty permanent, the PEMA bonds chemically to the silicon, then the PVA bonds chemically to the PEMA. The whole process sounds pretty permanent, I suppose you could polish off the coatings if you got aggressive with the cleanings, so permanent doesn't mean impervious to any assault. You can also deposit a layer of silicon on to just about anything with the right equipment so it should go on plastic lenses too.

You can't stop water condensing on a cold surface (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35527718)

I used to use Rain-X anti-fog on the inside of my windshield, and the only result was that the water condensed into larger droplets, ran down the windshield behind the dashboard, and caused mold. My insurance company had to total the car because of the health hazard.

Re:You can't stop water condensing on a cold surfa (1)

Combatso (1793216) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528092)

did you also use armorall wipes on your ass? i use the defogger setting on my climate controls to clear fog on the inside of my windshield

Re:You can't stop water condensing on a cold surfa (1)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529132)

"Health hazard"? Unless you're immunosuppressed or hypersensitive, mold isn't really a health hazard. If it were, the US between the Appalachians and the Great Plains would be uninhabitable.

Coating (1)

ledow (319597) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528068)

No coating of any kind has ever worked on anything I've bought. I'm very careful with everything but coatings just don't last if you use the item often enough to get it dirty, need to clean it, etc. There is no such thing as a "permanent coating" when it comes to glass and plastic that are flexible enough, or under such force, that they move.

Glass-fogging is also not a major problem except in a closed environment (e.g. a camera lens). You carry a tissue. Low-tech but it means your glasses cost less than 1/2 of what the "coated" ones cost for the 2 seconds of inconvenience maybe one or twice a day only during winter.

However, glass-fogging is pretty easy to solve. Heat the surface. It doesn't need to be hot-to-the-touch, just as warm as the hottest air around it. This is how car demisters work and nobody whinges about them "wearing off" or "needing a reapplication", etc. It only takes a minute for them to clear the screen at best and then you don't need them for a long while after. The only reason it takes a minute is because you have to clear a huge area.

You can buy heated gloves. You can buy heated vests. You can buy heated socks. You can buy heated hats. They are cheap, warm things up nicely, and run off AAA's. If "fogging" is such a problem in these sports/activities/uses, why not replicate the greatest, most prevalent, most effective solution known to man - the demister or "warm the surface up a bit". Anything else seems liable to just causing little puddles at the bottom of your windscreen, in your glasses / cameras etc. because the water has to go somewhere - at least if you evaporate it, it's likely to escape.

Motorcycle visors - more than enough room and tech to warm them up a bit. Ski Goggles - same. Camera lenses - same (in fact, some do just that already). Car windscreens - gosh, wonder what we can do there.

Do I want hydrophobic or hydrophilic then? (1)

kooky45 (785515) | more than 3 years ago | (#35528094)

I cycle and it rains here a lot so I want a hydrophobic coating on my lenses so the rain runs off. But it's also often cold and humid so I don't want fogged lenses and that needs a hydrophilic coating. Which one do I really want, or do I need different coatings on either side of the lenses?

Lemme guess... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35528744)

Canadian researchers eh? I'll bet the number one thing they were thinking about for this was hockey face shields.

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Yes but can they.... (1)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 3 years ago | (#35529526)

Yes, but can they add this to a bottle of KY lube, I hate when the friction fogs up my girlfriends glasses.

I thought you said "Anti-FROG coating"! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35529702)

Was wondering if they had a real bad frog problem in Canada akin to Australia's cane toads or something...

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