A prototype that can superimpose images onto the user’s normal view.
Researchers at Ghent University, Belgium, have developed a curved LCD display that can be integrated within a contact lens. The LCD lens enables a greater flexibility of pixel sizes, and utilizes the entire display surface. The technology could eventually lead to an superimposed image projected onto the user’s normal view, similar to Google’s Project Glass but without the headgear. For cosmetic purposes, users can also change the color of their eyes in an instant, without the need to take out the contact lens.
The research is still in its early stage and Jelle De Smet, the main researcher on the project, acknowledging some of the challenges:
Normally, flexible displays using liquid crystal cells are not designed to be formed into a new shape, especially not a spherical one. Thus, the main challenge was to create a very thin, spherically curved substrate with active layers that could withstand the extreme molding processes. Moreover, since we had to use very thin polymer films, their influence on the smoothness of the display had to be studied in detail. By using new kinds of conductive polymers and integrating them into a smooth spherical cell, we were able to fabricate a new LCD-based contact lens display.
Watch the video below to see how this liquid crystal-based contact lens display works.