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A streetcar with sunglasses for windows?

Posted by Jim Connolly on 21st Sep 2015

Things are getting hot in Edinburgh, Scotland right now. And the solution could be… some huge sunglasses lenses. Well almost. If that sounds a little weird or confusing, please allow me to explain.

It seems the good folks of Edinburgh recently invested in a 27-strong fleet of streetcars or trolley cars, known locally as trams. For whatever reason, the vehicles were not fitted with air-conditioning. As a result, during the hottest summer days, the temperatures inside were extremely uncomfortable. With so much glass and no air-con, the heat would become more and more intense. As you can imagine, the passengers and staff complained.

Initially, the streetcars would open all the doors for a little longer at each stop. The idea was to let some more air in. Apparently, it made no real difference and the temperatures increased again as soon as the doors closed and the heat was trapped inside.

Giant sunglasses?

The solution currently being looked at, is to apply an ultraviolet-resistant film over the vehicle’s windows. Yes, the windows will become something like giant sunglasses lenses!

Apparently, as well as blocking the sun’s damaging UV rays, this will also bring temperatures down. I’m assuming the film is also darkened in order to achieve this. Anyhow, a test vehicle has already been fitted with the UV protection and staff told a local Edinburgh newspaper that it has made a big difference.

Let’s hope the sunglasses-like windows work and the good people of Edinburgh have a more comfortable journey, next summer.

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