A strong partnership between two of POF’s Adelaide clients, UniSA and SMR Automotive, has been further validated with one of their joint technical development teams being recently awarded the inaugural Prime Minister’s New Innovator Prize. We congratulate Dr Colin Hall of UniSA, who was the lead inventor for a ground-breaking external vehicle mirror. Since its successful commercialisation by SMR Automotive in 2012, 1.6 million mirrors have been exported to the United States to be used in Ford trucks.
There were several innovation challenges for vehicle mirror manufacturers looking to use plastic materials instead of metal materials. These included overcoming problems with coating adhesion to plastic, oxidation of reflective mirror layers and coating stability in both sunlight and extreme temperatures. Dr Hall and his team developed a coating technique that delivered a safer product that was less inclined to shatter, significantly lighter and therefore more efficient, and which could be manufactured relatively cheaply and in large volumes.
POF is proud to have worked with Dr Hall and his team on this project. It is always pleasing to see real-word commercial success develop merely from an inventor’s initial question of “What if we were to do this…?”