I’ll break it to you early. This car doesn’t really clean itself. Especially not on the inside. What it does do is it doesn’t get dirty. So instead of being self-cleaning, it’s actually self not-dirtying. If you follow me.
Scientists took one of those new hydrophobic and oleophobic coatings and sprayed it on half of this car and then ran it around a muddy course. Why half? to prove a point. That’s why scientist’s do everything they do.
The surface of the coating is comprised of nano-scale patterns of geometric shapes with high-points that help to create a low surface energy. This causes droplets of water to touch a very small percentage of the coating. The water in the droplet that does not touch these “high points” is held together by intermolecular cohesive forces of the water molecules. This effectively creates a protective layer of air between the paint and environment, and stops standing water and road spray from creating dirty marks on the car’s surface.
Hit the jump for a video.