High Tech Security Glass

Scientists develop new motion sensor that enables window panes and glass doors to detect movements via a special coating

Burglar: iStockPhoto

Professional thieves beware! In addition to motion sensors, security cameras, flood lights, rent-a-cops and Doberman pinchers, there’s a new piece of technology designed specifically to ruin your day. And to make matters worse, it’s invisible. Well, not exactly invisible, but stare right at it and you won’t realize it’s there. Worried? Thanks to a novel new motion sensor developed by the Fraunhofer Institutes for Applied Polymer Research IAP in Potsdam-Golm, Germany, you should be.

It seems the beaker-tweakers at Frounhofer have figured out a way to turn regular glass doors and windows into high tech security devices. The glass itself is coated with a fluorescent material containing nanoparticles that convert light into fluorescent radiation. When the invisible light of a UV lamp “illuminates” the glass panes, the fluorescent radiation generated is channeled to the edges of the window, where it is detected by sensors. For example, if someone (The Hamburglar) steps into the light of the lamp, less light reaches the coating and less radiation is produced. When sensors are installed on all four sides of the window or door frame, statistical conclusions can be drawn from the data as to how large, how fast and in what direction the object d’ crime is moving (toward the burgers). In other words, a hummingbird won’t trip the alarm.

The software, designed by Computer Architecture and Software Technology FIRST in Berlin, is so smart it can even interpret different light signals. This enables the system to easily distinguish between the frequency of the UV lamp and the slowly changing light from a passing car’s headlamp.


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