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The Sebir That Bred The Intermittent Windscreen Wiper

Background

In 1962, an engineer and inventor Bob Kearns, whose eyesight was partially impaired, was driving in rain and was struggling to see because of the constant movement of the wiper blades. Faced with this problem, he began thinking about how the human eye blinks to clean itself only when it needs to

Goal

Improve the efficiency of car windscreen wipers

Problem

Once activated, wipers operated incessantly irrespective of whether it's raining or not

Sebir

The efficiency of car windscreen wipers was transformed through sensitizing their operation to the incidence of rain Manual 'on-off' activation was no longer necessary as the windscreen wipers operated only when needed

Association Comment

Bob Kearns associated more broadly from the capability of the human eye to self-clean by blinking when needed and, in so doing, was able to breed a wiper that automatically cleaned the windscreen only when it rained

Historic Impact

Bob Kearn's insight and subsequent endeavours led to the invention of the intermittent windscreen wiper