Phrase of the Day: Elliptical Acoustic Mirror

By Tori T.

Now, that’s something you’ve possibly never heard of, an elliptical acoustic mirror. Ford engineers used it to measure noise as well as pinpoint the source of it on the all-new Escape – specifically, on the surface of the vehicle, such as wind – in order to ensure the interior would be quieter than the previous model. As you can see from the photo, it sort of looks like a satellite dish with a microphone.

It was the first use of the technology on a Ford sport utility vehicle, and you could call its usage in the United States downright groundbreaking. However, it has been utilized more commonly by European luxury vehicle manufacturers, and even more interesting is that the science behind acoustic mirrors can be traced back almost 100 years! A precursor to radar, it was used for “listening” for and detecting enemy aircraft along the coast of Great Britain during World War I.

How the tech has evolved in the case of the Escape is that it allowed engineers to make changes to the vehicle’s shape – notably the mirrors and A-pillar – while in the early clay model phase in order to test theories and validate expected results. The work was done in the Ford Aeroacoustic Wind Tunnel in Germany. “We previously didn’t have this tool available,” said Peter Kleesattel, Interior Quietness Development Engineer. “Essentially we were able to optimize the shape earlier. In noise and vibration, the basic idea is you have noise sources outside the vehicle and you have the path.”

Preliminary data shows the new Escape will be among the leaders in interior quietness. In particular, the tuning work on the A-pillar helps ensure better noise performance in crosswind situations. Wind noise performance has been optimized through more than 160 hours of engineering. In a typical eight-hour block, more than 20 configurations can be tested, including glass, mirror sealing and door sealing.

“Previous technologies required more of a trial-and-error approach to finding the issue,” added Bill Gulker, Ford NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) Supervisor.
dVEn 08/05/2012
I like the design because it looks new and refreshed. Some of you still like the old boxy look then buy an old 1977 van to drive. This is 2013 people.. and some say i'm going to look at Honda? if it's an CR-V your going to look at then you will be unhappy too because it looks likr the new Escape.
Vickie Blackmon 01/29/2012
Amy, It doesn't have a gas cap
Brandon Clark 01/28/2012
The ecoboost by far will have no issue being a 4cl. I have the 3.5 eco in the 150 and it runs better than my 5.4 ever did.
Brad Barefoot 01/28/2012
Hey Ford ! Won't quieter also mean more aero-dynamic ? I guess that fact got lost in the translation. The better the aero package, the better the fuel economy boys and girls. I like the re-design, it further enforces the Ford Look. As far as the Asian competitors the *clone look just doesn't do it for me. They all look like jelly-beans on wheels to me. Also the V-6 fans will not have much to cheer about if we do see $5 a gallon gas in the future. The Eco-Boost champions from Ford will be the ones to beat. Boys and Girls this equals to V-6 performance with 4-Cylinder fuel economy. I was looking towards the C-Max, but a Escape 2-Liter Eco-Boost has worked it's way into my attention, imagine having 3,500 lb tow capacity with 4-cylinder economy when it's not needed. I have.
N. Rodriguez 01/27/2012
Ugly? Try aerodynamic. However if I had the money, I wouldn't buy one until it had a naturally aspirated v6 option. I just think buying a completely reliable, potent, and powerful v6, instead of a turbo 4 that is just a bit more efficient, would be a more prudent move. From looking at some statistics regarding 4cyl engines against the 6 and 8 cylinder motors, there really is no replacement for displacement.
Sue Ftorek 01/26/2012
Ugly ugly ugly!!!
Sue Ftorek 01/26/2012
Umm the 2013 escape is absolutely UGLY!!!!! You screwed up again FORD!!!!!!!!!!!
Amy Williams Dodge 01/25/2012
Does the engine light come on when the gas cap is loose?
Bob OReilly 01/25/2012
Let's help the Explorer and Edge with noise reduction
Krzysztof Czarnecki 01/25/2012
so that what it looks like . I like it . it's a cool little suv. has power and just feels good .
David Bergeron 01/24/2012
A V6 should be a option but that 4 banger seems to be pulling as much as the old Escape V6. I wonder if its worse on the engine and tranny to be working that hard for a 4 cylinder though...
Tom Vittitow 01/24/2012
this is a very smooth ,quiet and very powerful vehicle.DRIVE ONE AND YOU'LL PROBABLY BUY IT!BUY AMERICAN!!!
Francisco Javier Castro Catrin 01/24/2012
un ford siempre es un ford
Richard Lee 01/24/2012
Can't wait to test drive one!
David Galindo Garcia 01/24/2012
nuevo Kuga para Norteamerica y pronto para Europa, me gusta, espero que tenga como opción techo solar corredizo y no como ahora el C-max que es fijo y no se abre. Saludos con la paz a todos los que estuvisteis en la JMJ de Madrid
Matthew Amack 01/24/2012
Love the new look,BUT needs AWD with a big V6 EcoBoost!!!
Rick Slusher 01/24/2012
i like it !!!
Robert Brown 01/24/2012
I don't like this design. It doesn't look like a truck anymore. It looks like a Prius. However, this one doesn't come in a hybrid. Bad move Ford. I may have to concert to a Chevy Volt.
The Roll 'N Rock Show (Free Edge Productions & Media) 01/24/2012
Todd Latta 01/24/2012
Maybe I will get a Sport Track, oh wait Alan cancelled that vehicle. Maybe a Ranger, oh wait Alan cancelled that vehicle. Maybe I could get a Crown Vic, oh wait that is gone too, Town Car, oh wait that car is gone too now. Maybe I could get the Ford F-100...Alan cancelled that one before it came out too.....I guess what is left is the F-150 or Explorer. Not a bad choice....considering nothing is left for trucks or suvs or larger cars. just saying...
Todd Latta 01/24/2012
I agree with Jean, yes Ford ruined a classic design. When I trade my current Escape in I will not be getting a new Kuga I mean Escape, I mean Kuga....whatever..... Maybe time for a GMC Terrain....
Jim Klatt 01/24/2012
How can I get rid of this stuff on my Facebook? I love my F 150 but please...........
Sandy Wakeman-Schmelzer 01/24/2012
I love the new design. I would love to add one to our Ford line-up here at home, it would look cute with the rest of them.
Cheri Jakubowski Haberman 01/24/2012
I Love the new design...I can't wait to trade in my '04 Escape for a new one!! (but I do still love my '04...just time for a new one) ;-)
Cathy Stephan 01/24/2012
I agree w/ Jean. I decided not to buy an Escape because of the design change. It's too bad.
Todd Mcgarvey 01/24/2012
@jean, y cause u don't like them???
Jean Dahm 01/24/2012
So disappointed in the new 2013 design!!! I have a 2003 and was going to order a new 2013 until I saw it. Say it isn't so FORD you ruined a classic design. I predict a big drop in sales:( Honda and Hyundai you're looking good.
Maggie Taylor 01/24/2012
I drive the Kuga at present and the key feature for me is the split rear tail gate. I hope the new European Kuga/Escape will continue this feature. It is a terrific car!
Celeste Sanchez Estrada 01/24/2012
me to lol
Gavin Chase 01/24/2012
if i had money i would buy a mustang bt i dont haha
Gavin Chase 01/24/2012
Phrase of the Day: Elliptical Acoustic Mirror
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