New details around Tesla’s upcoming Cybertruck have emerged through a patent filed by the American EV maker with the US Patent And Trademark Office, as well as other international patent offices.
In the patent, which was initially spotted by Electrek, the American EV maker mentions how applying localised heat to a portion of its glass surfaces could allow the forming of a feature line. Or, in other words, how glass can be bent:
“Automotive glass structures having curves and feature lines and methods for forming the same are provided. An example method includes applying localized heat (e.g., via a laser, heating element) to a location of a substantially planar glass structure and bending the glass structure at that location (e.g., along a line of the planar glass structure) to form a feature line in the glass structure. The bending can be formed to have a radius of curvature of between 2 mm and 5 cm. Additional layers of curved or joined glass layers may further be included to form a curved multi-layer glass structure for automotive use.”
In the patent’s detailed description of the disclosure, the techniques mentioned are said to be suitable for use in “a car, a truck, a semi-truck, and so on,” with the patent images clearly showing the Cybertruck as an example.
Gallery: Tesla Cybertruck Windshield Patent Images
This isn’t to say Tesla’s upcoming electric pickup will definitely use glass processed with the techniques described in this patent, but judging by what the American company has said in the past regarding its so-called Armor Glass and high-durability glass project, we can assume that at some point in the future, we’ll see aggressively-curved glass on the Cybertruck. Moreover, the Tesla Semi might also benefit from these forming techniques, reducing the number of glass panels currently used for its wraparound greenhouse.
The patent goes on to mention that similar glass structures could be used inside the vehicle, on the dashboard, for the gauges, inside panels for doors, consoles, and so on.
It’s an interesting approach on Tesla’s side and one that might resemble the curved windscreens of the 1950s and 1960s, although the quality of that glass was questionable when it came to distortion.
The Cybertruck is expected to debut sometime in mid-2023, although there’s no official word on this, with production equipment being spotted several times at the Gigafactory in Texas and with Tesla’s lead designer saying that the truck is finished from a “design perspective.”