Polarized sunglasses are especially known by drivers and people of the sea who use them to eliminate the brightness of the sun on the asphalt / water in a way that gives them better vision and comfort.
These characteristics make them ideal for most people and it is not surprising the boom they are having in recent years, but what is special about polarized lenses?
To better understand the advantages of polarized glasses we will first give a basic explanation about polarization.
What is Polarization
Sunlight vibrates in all directions, but when it bounces on a horizontal surface (asphalt, snow, water, …) is partially polarized, that is: the horizontal component of that vibration increases to the point where it becomes a light very bright and annoying: a reflection.
Polarized lenses are sunglasses that contain a special filter that blocks reflected light and only lets in useful light, allowing a vision without reflections and with a natural color and contrast.
Advantages of Polarized sunglasses
1. Vision without reflections
2. Superior sharpness and contrast
3. Total protection against UV rays
4. Colors that look more natural
5. Reduction of eye fatigue and improve the ability to concentrate at the wheel
6. Lightweight and resistant lenses that provide more comfort and safety
7. Suitable for people with high sensitivity to light
8. They exist with and without graduation: progressive lenses
9. They can be manufactured in combination with other features, such as: photochromic and polarized lenses, for example: Serengeti sunglasses
10. Ideal also for children because of its combination of protection and superior vision
Effect of polarized lenses
Polarization is a difficult phenomenon to explain. However, the advantages of polarized sunglasses are clearly perceived instantly:
Driving, there are times when a large amount of reflection of the asphalt and dashboard occurs. This reflection prevents us from seeing the road and the vehicles
With polarized lenses, we recover a more natural and detailed vision, which results in greater safety at the wheel: the reaction time and braking distance are less
Polarized lenses and driving
One of the biggest advantages of polarized sunglasses is that they are one more element of safety at the wheel: like the ABS, the braking assistant or the safety belt, with the difference that it has a preventive effect on accidents. Seeing better at the wheel translates into:
Greater capacity for concentration
Increased ability to anticipate changing traffic conditions
Less reaction time
Shorter braking distance: up to 7 meters driving at 80 km / h
On the other hand, keep in mind that using polarized sunglasses can prevent reading the HUD screens (Heads Up Display) used by some cars, as these lenses prevent the windshield from reaching the screen. It can also make it difficult to read the screens of browsers or the console.
Polarized lenses include a polarization core
Polarized lenses are more complex than traditional solar lenses and consist of several layers that include a polarization core and various UV filters and protective layers. A sample: these are, for example, the Ultra-polarized lenses of INVU:
1. Polarization Core
2. Color enhancer filter
3. UV filter
4. Impact resistant layer
5. Anti-scratch coating
disadvantages of polarized lenses
Polarized lenses also have limitations, although they are much less important than the advantages.
Polarized lenses are designed to reduce the reflections that occur on horizontal surfaces: asphalt, sidewalks, sand … etc, but are much less effective with other orientation of the surfaces: for example the reflection of the glass of a building.
Some screens based on liquid crystal (LCD), do not read well with these lenses. This is because LCD screens use polarized light to create images. It may be that our filter blocks this light and the screen is “off”. This usually happens especially at certain angles (typically at 45º on each side of the vertical)
The HUD-based screens (Heads Up Display) offered by some cars are not read correctly. This is because HUDs show reflected information and polarized lenses are responsible for making that reflection disappear.
Color range limited. These lenses do not have a catalog of colors as wide as traditional solar lenses.
Limited range of graduation. Not all lens types or graduations are available in a polarized version.
In some specific cases, a reflection can give us information about the surface on which it is produced. For example: Alpine skiers are fixed in the reflection of the ground because it allows them to locate more easily ice plates, which produce a characteristic reflex.
How to distinguish polarized lenses
Usually, Polarized glasses usually carry a badge on the lens (P) or on the inside of one of the rods (Polarized)
Without these references, to know if a lens is polarized or not, you can place the lens in front of an LCD screen (for example, that of a computer) and, when you rotate the lens, you will notice that the screen lightens and darkens when looking at it through the lens at certain angles of rotation. This is a sign that the lens is polarizing the light and allowing it to pass or block it depending on the angle it incurs with respect to the polarization nucleus.