Disruptive Self‑Cleaning Technology

Innovasonic, Inc. is developing a disruptive self-cleaning technology — PiezoWipe™. It is an active cleaning using ultrasonic energy emitted from an invisible and transparent micro-transducer array integrated with glass or film.

Value Proposition

Large Diversified Markets

Automotive & aerospace, mobile electronics & solar panels. Target applications validated by leading market players. TAM ~ $8B by 2025

Unique IP

5 patents pending on disruptive design and fabrication methods

Strong Partnerships

major R&D Institute in France
global glass producer
Applications
Wiperless windshield
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Energy harvesting
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Haptic displays
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Solar panels & windows self-cleaning
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Sensors self-cleaning (LIDAR & cameras)
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Wiperless windshield
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Sensors self-cleaning (LIDAR & cameras)
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Solar panels & windows self-cleaning
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Haptic displays
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Energy harvesting
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Wiperless windshield

Innovasonic's wiperless windshield concept moves the cleaning process from a stand-alone equipment (ultrasonic bath) directly to the objects cleanable in the field: car’s or plane’s windshield, window, sunroof, etc. This transition became possible with the development of proprietary PiezoWipe™ technology: ultrasonic micro-transducer arrays.

Sensors self-cleaning (LIDAR & cameras)

One of the obvious troubles is to keep camera and LIDAR lens/window of driverless cars and drones clean from dust and deposits, water drops and rain. PiezoWipe could bring required assurance of sensor systems being alert and accurate all the time, independent of weather conditions.

Solar panels & windows self-cleaning

PiezoWipe automatic cleaning method could be a game changing technology for cleaning solar panels with minimum operational cost. It could be a saver of people's lives and pockets.

Haptic displays

Innovasonic’s micro-transducer array integrated with display glass could also enable a multi-fingerprint identification on any area of display and enhanced biometric sensing.

Energy harvesting

Another opportunity is wireless charging of mobile displays from an external sources of ultrasonic energy, The micro-transducer arrays integrated with entire area of display glass would be a very efficient energy converters.

Wiperless Windshield
Innovasonic's wiperless windshield concept is an active glass cleaning technology (not just coatings), which uses a well known ultrasonic cleaning method. It moves the cleaning process from a stand-alone equipment (ultrasonic bath) directly to the objects cleanable in the field: car’s or plane’s windshield, window, sunroof, etc.
This transition became possible with the development of proprietary PiezoWipe™ technology: ultrasonic micro-transducer arrays. The advantages of wiperless windshield are obvious — no safety compromise (no obstruction of view due to moving wipers), high efficiency of cleaning (no water and dirt smearing), no manual scrubbing stubborn plants
or birds deposits, complete windshield maintenance solution (removal of water flows and drops, dust and other types of contamination, ice and fog), energy saving (local cleaning of contaminated area, and only when contamination is detected by integrated sensor array), on-demand or completely automatic.
Sensors self-cleaning (LIDAR & cameras)
While driverless cars and drones have demonstrated a remarkable ability to navigate a complex terrane and traffic, accidents still happen, due to inefficiency of the current sensors systems and software control. One of the obvious troubles is to keep camera and LIDAR lens/window clean from dust and deposits, water drops and rain. Recently Waymo, the self-driving car company owned by Alphabet, has engineered a "new" solution, still based on windshield wiper, thus having all associated with wiper operation deficiencies.
A rear-view cameras of the cars help drivers during reversing maneuvers, which are the cause of a particularly high number of accidents. According to the US government, these are responsible for an average of 210 deaths and 15,000 injuries every year. A study by the American National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows just how useful the camera can be: The universal use of rear-view cameras throughout the country could not only greatly reduce the number of injuries but also save up
to 69 human lives every year. That is why all new vehicles in the USA will have to be equipped with rear-view cameras as of 2018. Due to the positions at which they are installed in the vehicle, these cameras are exposed to the effect of the weather and dirt, for example in the form of snow, ice, and dust. PiezoWipe could bring required assurance of sensor systems being alert and accurate all the time, independent of weather conditions.
Solar panels & windows self-cleaning
The average annual loss of energy harvesting due to solar panels contamination varies from 1.5% to 6.2% for eight different PV installation sites in California, Nevada, and Arizona. Large-scale solar plants are installed in semi-arid and desert areas where dust storms are common and rainfall is rare. As such, appropriate strategies are needed to alleviate the problem. Cleaning with water using effective detergents is the most commonly used method for cleaning. In the regions with
high humidity, during the early morning period with possible dew formation, the dust creates a cement-like formation on the glass surface, which requires subsequent scrubbing. With growing concern over water resources, particularly in arid areas, any cleaning method that use less water for cleaning solar collectors can be both cost effective and environmentally safe. PiezoWipe automatic cleaning method could be a game changing technology for cleaning solar panels with minimum
operational cost. Washing skyscraper windows remains a perilous profession, requiring workers to have the reflexes of a trapeze performer high above city streets. Steel and glass skyscrapers need to be washed about twice a year. The cost of cleaning their exteriors can run as high as $50,000 for jobs that require several weeks of work. PiezoWipe could be a saver of people's lives and pockets.
Haptic displays
Surface haptic devices modulate the friction between the surface and the fingertip, and can thus be used to create a tactile perception of surface features or textures. Surface roughness, an important dimension in the tactile definition of texture, is mediated by high frequency vibration produced by the interaction of the skin with the surface. Ultrasonic surface haptic devices create
tactile percepts on a bare finger by vibrating the surface ultrasonically, reducing the fingertip contact time with the surface and thus reducing friction. While the user cannot perceive the ultrasonic vibration of the surface itself, friction between the surface and fingertip is reduced as the amplitude of the vibrations increases. This phenomena can be used to create a haptic (tactile)
response touch screens, which would allow to operate a computerized devices (cellphones, tablets, dash boards of the car) without looking at them. Innovasonic’s micro-transducer array integrated with display glass could also enable a multi-fingerprint identification on any area of display and enhanced biometric sensing.
Energy harvesting
Mobile electronics requires battery power, and batteries pretty frequently require charging or replacement. Sometimes charging is not possible, thus it would be highly useful to get a renewable energy powering a mobile device by harvesting it from environment. There are multiple known energy harvesting methods, but mechanical energy harvesting happens to be the most prominent. This technique utilizes piezoelectric materials where
deformations produced by pressure or bending and stretching are directly converted to electrical charge via piezoelectric effect. Transparent piezoelectric micro-transducer array integrated into mobile device display glass (cellphone, watch, glasses, AR/VR) can be used to harvest mechanical energy generated by touching a display screen (touch sensor) or just vibrations from sound waves. Another opportunity is wireless charging
of mobile displays from an external sources of ultrasonic energy. The micro-transducer arrays integrated with entire area of display glass would be a very efficient energy converters. Similar concept of transparent microscale array could be implemented with light absorbing materials (silicon, GaAs, etc.) so that mobile device displays could absorb and store solar or thermal energy for self-powered operation.
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Julian Zegelman

Corporate Attorney, partner at Velton Zegelman PC., repre­sents technology companies and venture capital funds: corporate transactions, regulatory compliance, licensing, and mergers and acquisitions. Serial entrepreneur: Co-Founder and director at Rolith, Inc. and Innovasonic, Inc, former executive positions at NanoBioNexus, Inc., Universal Stabilization Technologies.

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Boris Kobrin

High-tech industry ex­ecutive and serial en­trepre­neur with two sold startups and 30+ years of lead­ership in emerging technologies development. Distinguished inventor with more than 150 World­wide patents.

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