Mercedes create near invisible car using LEDs

first_imgThe emission free car is still a vehicle of the future, as even with the introduction of electric cars there’s still emissions produced in manufacturing and ultimately recycling the batteries they contain. However, car manufacturers have to be forward-thinking and experimental, and Mercedes is one of the best at trying out future tech.Since 2002 the company has been manufacturing a hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle, called the F-Cell, in very limited quantities. The original was based on an A-Class and only had a range of 160km, but the second-generation F-Cell was based on a B-Class and can travel 402km. Impressive, but just as impressive is how Mercedes decided to advertise this zero-emission F-Cell vehicle.Mercedes decided that zero emission is zero impact on the environment, so it’s as if the car isn’t even there. With that in mind, they opted to make the F-Cell invisible as it traveled down the street making heads turn. How do you make a car invisible? With lots of LEDs and a camera.The video above shows how one side of the F-Cell was covered with LEDs to form a display. On the other side of the car a camera system was mounted which captured the required image to output to the screen. The end result is actually quite impressive.While the car isn’t completely invisible, you are just seeing a moving outline because the LED screen is projecting what’s behind it. The effect works best when the scenery behind is uniform, e.g. while crossing the bridge in the video, and at night when there’s more contrast between light and dark.Putting a reactive layer over an object seems to be the best way to hide it at the moment. BAE Systems demonstrated a similar technique with its thermal invisibility cloak. For those wanting something a little simpler you could actually do at home, then look no further than Ben Heck’s Portal shirt.Mercedes made the F-Cell invisible for marketing purposes, but why not coat the body of a car in LEDs? You certainly wouldn’t want to make it invisible for fear of accidents, but with a high enough resolution it could mean you car is a different color everyday or carries a distinctive design. via Mashablelast_img

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