Mirror assembly for vehicle

  • US 8,529,108 B2
  • Filed: 04/01/2010
  • Issued: 09/10/2013
  • Est. Priority Date: 09/20/2002
  • Status: Active Grant
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First Claim
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1. An interior rearview mirror assembly suitable for use in a vehicle, said interior rearview mirror assembly comprising:

  • a bezelless mirror casing element;

    an electrochromic reflective element disposed at said bezelless mirror casing element, said electrochromic reflective element comprising a front substrate and a rear substrate with an electrochromic medium sandwiched therebetween;

    wherein said front substrate has a first surface and a second surface opposite said first surface, wherein said first surface generally faces a driver of a vehicle when said interior rearview mirror assembly is normally mounted in the vehicle and the driver is normally operating the vehicle and wherein said second surface faces said electrochromic medium;

    a first electrically conductive layer disposed at said second surface of said front substrate, wherein said first electrically conductive layer comprises a transparent electrically conductive layer;

    wherein said rear substrate has a third surface and a fourth surface opposite said third surface, said third surface facing said electrochromic medium;

    a mirror reflector disposed at said third surface of said rear substrate, wherein said mirror reflector comprises a metallic reflective layer;

    wherein said front substrate has a length dimension and a width dimension and wherein said length dimension of said front substrate is greater than said width dimension of said front substrate;

    wherein said rear substrate has a length dimension and a width dimension and wherein said length dimension of said rear substrate is greater than said width dimension of said rear substrate;

    wherein said front substrate has a circumferential outer edge and said rear substrate has a circumferential outer edge;

    wherein said electrochromic medium is disposed between said front substrate and said rear substrate in a cavity established by a perimeter seal that connects said front substrate to said rear substrate and that spaces said front substrate apart from said rear substrate;

    wherein, when said front substrate is connected with said rear substrate via said perimeter seal, one of (a) said circumferential outer edge of said rear substrate is generally flush with said circumferential outer edge of said front substrate and no portion of said rear substrate substantially protrudes beyond said front substrate, and (b) at least a portion of said circumferential outer edge of said rear substrate is inward of said circumferential outer edge of said front substrate and no portion of said rear substrate substantially protrudes beyond said front substrate;

    a perimeter band disposed at said second surface of said front substrate and around the perimeter border region of said second surface of said front substrate, wherein said perimeter band renders said perimeter seal substantially unobservable to the driver normally operating the vehicle and viewing said reflective element assembly when said interior rearview mirror assembly is normally mounted in the vehicle;

    wherein, when said reflective element is disposed at said bezelless mirror casing element, said bezelless mirror casing element does not overlap said first surface of said front substrate;

    an overlay element applied onto and at least partially over a portion of said first surface of said front substrate, said overlay element comprising at least one user input associated with operation of at least one accessory of said interior rearview mirror assembly; and

    an electrical connection between said at least one user input and circuitry, wherein said electrical connection is established around said circumferential outer edge of said front substrate proximate said overlay element.

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