For as long as we can remember, Volvo has been obsessed with automotive safety. This is, after all, the company that helped to popularize retractable three-point seat belts.
It’s also the company that conducts some of the most extreme crash tests in the industry. Now, Volvo Cars have announced an investment in Spectralics, an optical and imaging technology startup. This move comes via the company’s venture capital investment arm known as the Volvo Cars Tech Fund. Volvo’s investment will give the Swedish automaker access to groundbreaking technologies that could transform the in-car experience.
One of these technologies could enable the largest head-up display seen in the industry so far.
Israeli-based Spectralics has a background in aerospace technology development, so it’s perhaps not a great surprise that the company has come up with a multi-layered thin combiner (MLTC) solution with a thin optics ‘film’ that can see through surfaces of various sizes and shapes.
The tech could be used to overlay images across a vehicle’s entire windshield. This would dramatically widen the driver’s field of view and virtual objects can be superimposed onto the actual environment perceived by the driver.
Considering that current head-up displays are around 10 inches in size, this could be a huge step forward.