Variable reflectance mirror reflective element for exterior mirror assembly

  • US 9,878,670 B2
  • Filed: 05/16/2016
  • Issued: 01/30/2018
  • Est. Priority Date: 09/20/2002
  • Status: Active Grant
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First Claim
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1. A variable reflectance exterior mirror reflective element suitable for use in a vehicular exterior rearview mirror assembly, said exterior mirror reflective element comprising:

  • a front substrate and a rear substrate;

    an electrochromic medium disposed between said front and rear substrates;

    wherein said front substrate has a first surface and a second surface;

    said second surface of said front substrate having a transparent electrically conductive layer disposed thereat;

    wherein said rear substrate has a third surface and a fourth surface;

    a mirror reflector disposed at said third surface of said rear substrate;

    wherein said mirror reflector comprises a stack of thin films comprising at least two thin films, and wherein said stack of thin films comprises at least one metal thin film;

    wherein a first thin film of said stack of thin films comprises a material that has a specific resistivity of less than about 1×

    10

    3
    ohm·

    cm, and wherein a second thin film of said stack of thin films comprises a material that has a specific resistivity of less than about 1×

    10

    3
    ohm.cm;

    wherein said electrochromic medium is disposed in an interpane cavity established between said third surface of said rear substrate and said second surface of said front substrate and is bounded by a perimeter seal;

    wherein no part of said rear substrate extends beyond any part of said front substrate;

    wherein a perimeter layer is disposed at said second surface of said front substrate proximate a perimeter edge of said front substrate;

    wherein said perimeter layer generally conceals said perimeter seal from view by a person viewing through said front substrate;

    wherein light that reflects off of said mirror reflector and passes through said electrochromic medium and said front substrate exhibits a substantially non-spectrally selective reflectance characteristic to a person viewing said exterior mirror reflective element when no voltage is applied to said electrochromic medium;

    wherein said perimeter layer comprises a reflective perimeter layer;

    wherein said perimeter layer comprises an electrically conductive perimeter layer;

    wherein at least a portion of said mirror reflector extends out under said perimeter seal towards a perimeter edge of said rear substrate;

    wherein a display is disposed proximate said fourth surface of said rear substrate of said mirror reflective element;

    wherein said display is disposed proximate said fourth surface of said rear substrate of said mirror reflective element at a light-transmitting portion of said mirror reflector established by laser ablation;

    wherein said display comprises at least one light emitting diode;

    wherein said display is configured to be operated responsive to a blind spot detector of a vehicle equipped with an exterior rearview mirror assembly that incorporates said mirror reflective element; and

    wherein said at least one light emitting diode, when activated responsive to the blind spot detector of the equipped vehicle, emits light that passes through said light-transmitting portion of said mirror reflector to be viewable to a person viewing through said front substrate of said mirror reflective element.

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