In a recently published Journal of Aviation Technology and Engineering article, researchers from Lewis University report they have created a coating for aircraft that reduces pilot distraction from laser attacks.
In its 2013 study, Lewis University showed these laser attacks, which average around 3,750 incidents a year, can be a distraction to pilots and a potential safety hazard during critical phases of flight.
As part of their continued research on the matter, researchers at the university recently developed a solution through the use of photoresponsive nanocomposite coatings on aircraft windscreens.
The new study determined the application of the engineered films resulted in a reduction in laser intensity from 36% to 88%.
The study was completed through a collaboration of the aviation, physics and chemistry departments at Lewis University. The chemistry department developed the photoselective coatings, and the physics department developed the apparatus to test the coatings while allowing safe viewings of laser illumination. The coatings were bench-tested in a laboratory prior to conducting field tests at the 200- and 500-foot distances.
A video describing the research is available here
General Aviation News Human Factors columnist Jeffrey Madison recently wrote a column on laser attacks.