Early prototype of HUD in a contact lens

Posted by on January 17th, 2008 in communications, wearable

contact lens with integrated circuit

Wow. If the promise of this research holds true we might all be getting Clatter a lot sooner than we thought:

Engineers at the University of Washington have for the first time used manufacturing techniques at microscopic scales to combine a flexible, biologically safe contact lens with an imprinted electronic circuit and lights.

“Looking through a completed lens, you would see what the display is generating superimposed on the world outside,” said Babak Parviz, a UW assistant professor of electrical engineering. “This is a very small step toward that goal, but I think it’s extremely promising.”

The prototype device contains an electric circuit as well as red light-emitting diodes for a display, though it does not yet light up. The lenses were tested on rabbits for up to 20 minutes and the animals showed no adverse effects.

The prototype contact lens does not correct the wearer’s vision, but the technique could be used on a corrective lens, Parviz said. And all the gadgetry won’t obstruct a person’s view.

“There is a large area outside of the transparent part of the eye that we can use for placing instrumentation,” Parviz said. Future improvements will add wireless communication to and from the lens. The researchers hope to power the whole system using a combination of radio-frequency power and solar cells placed on the lens, Parviz said.

A full-fledged display won’t be available for a while, but a version that has a basic display with just a few pixels could be operational “fairly quickly,” according to Parviz.

close up on contact lens

This sure beats making-do with those dorky HUD’s we featured earlier.

thanks for the tip-off Joshua Normal!

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5 Responses to “Early prototype of HUD in a contact lens”

  1. Awesome catch!

  2. [...] with for real Contact Lens HUDs in the works, we’re quite seriously looking at Clatter within a year or so. [...]

  3. Freakin’ awesome find.

  4. [...] Early prototype of HUD in a contact lens [...]

  5. Damn, that looks very interesting and advanced. Thing is what’s HUD? I only know what’s that in video games but not in real-life.

    What’s this thing for, MSN and internet on your eye-ball? Sensors for pilots or drivers…?