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Jaguar patents futuristic eye-tracking window wipers

Do you know that feeling when you're driving on a rainy day, and every time you look in the rear windscreen it's foggy and obscured, even though you turned the wipers on?

Well, Jaguar Land Rover might have a solution to that particular problem.

The company's new patent uses eye tracking technology to spot when the driver is trying to look at the rearview windscreen, and then wipes it clean.

The system is made out of tracking sensors that follow the movement of the driver's head and eyes. When the sensors spot the driver wants to look back, it will give it another wipe, just in case.

Jaguar's patent notes (opens in new tab)say the current wiper system is a safety hazard, for one simple reason.

When the person driving a car on a rainy or snowy road looks back and sees nothing, he will most likely try to adjust the wiper program. At that moment he or she will most likely look down, which is particularly dangerous, as the driver should have his eyes fixed at to the road at all times.

The company applied for the patent in 2013, but it was published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday.

In a statement posted on the Jaguar Land Rover website, Dr Wolfgang Ziebart, JLR Engineering Director, said: "The attention-monitoring technology we are showcasing at CES has huge potential for road safety. If the driver's gaze moves towards the infotainment screen or out of a side window, and the car identifies this, then the system could alert the driver to hazards earlier. DMS could even enhance settings in safety systems like Autonomous Emergency Braking, to reflect the driver's lack of attention. As the car drives up to a hazard, the brakes could engage autonomously sooner because the car realises the driver has not seen the danger ahead.”

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.