NASCAR races to the battefield

For the past several years, NASCAR race cars have had their windshields covered with thin laminate films that can be removed easily during a race for increased visibility. The same technology will soon be applied to U.S. Army Blackhawk and Chinook helicopters flying in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“”A lot of technology comes from the armed services or the aviation industry and applies to racing,”” Ryan Pemberton, crew chief for Joe Nemechek, told a North Carolina TV reporter. “”But this time, it seems like they’re getting a little bit from us.””

Nemechek drives the No. 1 car, which is sponsored by the U.S. Army.

The Army Aviation Applied Technology Directorate, which began testing the windshield films in March, just gave the nod to add them to the helicopters. It is hoped the laminate films, which cost about $100 each, will lengthen the life of windshields, which usually cost between $3,000 and $5,000 to replace.

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