Electronic contact lenses have been in development for more than a decade, and several laboratories around the world work on the project: being able to integrate electronic devices in lenses in contact with the mucous membranes of the eyes can bring important medical benefits, such as real-time measurement of intraocular pressure or analysis of glucose levels.
For some time, progress in the field has been slow due to the lack of a stable and lasting way of energetically powering the system: today a small "tear" can accelerate the path that will give us a new, formidable diagnostic tool (and not only).
A research team from the French university IMT Atlantique has found a way to integrate a flexible battery into a pair of lenses. The micro battery manages to produce enough energy to power a small LED for several hours: it is by far the greatest power achieved in the field.
Research has recently focused on wireless transmission of energy, with extremely limited results and near-zero efficiency.
"These results comfort us in the hunt for an ambitious goal, that of creating a new generation of oculometers capable of connecting to increasingly efficient augmented reality systems to track eye movements and produce images and experiences that are more realistic than ever," reads a statement by IMT professor Jean-Louis de Bougrenet de la Tocnaye.