TechBlick’s online event on 19-20 April 2023 will cover innovations and prototypes/products in augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR) and mixed-reality (MR) displays. It is a unique event covering all key technologies from lens and waveguides to microdisplays and other display technology to novel patterning and manufacturing techniques to eye tracking and machine learning/AI techniques. In parallel, it seeks to highlight interesting display prototypes and products in development or recently unveiled.
It is a unique global (online) forum bringing together innovators from around the world, including material developers, manufacturing pioneers, promising start-ups, and leading OEMs and display designers and makers.
The event seeks to advance the art, further helping the industry develop display platforms matching the exceptional performance of human vision while keeping the near-eye display module compact and lightweight.
3D Micromac AG
Area Sales Manager
Laser cutting for separating waveguides for AR devices
As the production of waveguide-based AR devices becomes increasingly industrialized, the design and robustness of waveguides are coming into sharper focus. Ultrashort pulsed lasers are promising for achieving scalable free-form cutting with high precision and strength. However, optimizing the laser process parameters and material compositions of high-index glasses poses a challenge for achieving optimal glass strength. To address this, SCHOTT AG and 3D-Micromac AG have developed a separation process prioritizing high and predictable bending strength. It has been integrated into a modular machine concept that can be scaled from lab to mass production use. This presentation introduces the first fully-automated machine solution for cost-effective free-form cutting of high-index glass used for AR waveguides. The presentation shows how different process, handling, and quality inspection modules provide high flexibility and scalability in this laser micromachining solution.
The 3D printed road to prescription smart glasses for all day, everyday use.
The first full time adopters of smart eyewear will be people that are already wearing eyewear on a daily basis. Virtually everyone in this category requires prescription lenses. Therefore, the first generation of smart eyewear that is worn all day and everyday, will have integrated prescription. Currently, the AR ecosystem is lacking a proper solution for prescription. Mass customization of optics without compromise in quality is key to solving this problem and will be extensively covered in this talk.
This talk will cover what the path to the first AR glasses for full-time use will look like, and the role that 3D printing will play. We will give an overview of the technical aspects of utilizing 3D printing for personalized optics, compare different 3D printing based technologies, and look at different optical designs for AR glasses. Designs that are becoming increasingly popular are so-called push-pull designs. This talk will cover such designs from both a technical and user experience perspective.
At the end of this talk, you will understand how 3D printing can be used to manufacture nanometer smooth optical lenses in a way that scales to mass production. You will be up to date on some of the latest advancement in AR optics and have a new perspective on what the first successful smart glasses will look like.
Agency for Science, Technology & Research (A*STAR)
Ramon Paniagua Dominguez
Program Leader, Scientist
Metaoptics for near-eye and holographic displays
Leveraging semiconductor mass production techniques for AR/VR optics
Senior Business Development Manager
Using Shape Memory Alloy (SMA) actuators for focus compensation in XR displays
Using actuators to correct focus has been shown as the preferred method in many optical systems including cameras. In XR displays focus adjustment is also required. It can prevent a loss of performance when ambient temperature changes causing distortion of the optical elements and can also enable dynamic adjustment of the virtual image distance. Existing actuators require always-on power consumption and are large and heavy, all of which is undesirable. Here we will present a novel SMA actuator which utilizes the unique characteristics of SMA to provide focus compensation without compromising power consumption in a lightweight and compact form factor.
CEO & Co-Founder
Advances in light field display
For Augmented Reality to spread and reach common usage levels, the visual experience needs to be entirely healthy and natural for the user. This is why CREAL has developed a unique AR display that combines light field imagery with ordinary highly transparent ophthalmic lenses, providing a true-to-life depth perception for the human eye and a customizable prescription with the classical aesthetic look of the lenses. While almost all AR glasses providers today are lumbered with trade-offs between focal depth, image resolution, and lens aesthetic, CREAL’s newest display finally enables an AR visual experience that “has it all”. This talk with introduce how.
Business Development Manager
Nano Imprinting Lithography From Single DIE to Wafer-Level HVM
Wafer-level nanoimprint lithography (NIL) is an increasingly important technology in the photonic industry, enabling precise replication of structures with complex geometries and sub-100nm resolution. NIL allows for the straightforward transfer of optical components with advanced patterning requirements to high volume manufacturing, with multiple structures replicated accurately over a large area in a single step. The fabrication of highly individual and high-performing optical structures relies on a combination of mastering techniques, replication equipment, and qualified imprint materials.
In this presentation, we will explore well-known lithography mastering techniques and recent advancements in 2-Photon-Polymerisation. We will discuss the path from prototyping using a single DIE master to achieving a fully populated wafer-level master. Additionally, we will address the factors necessary for achieving mature high-volume replication of optical structures using UV NIL, taking into consideration equipment requirements and material properties.
AR Ambient Dimming films and other flexible LC Optics for AR/VR
Liquid Crystal Optics technologies are key to improving the optical performance of AR/VR headsets, providing a wide variety of functions that improve viewer comfort and/or immersion, such as tunable lenses, and ambient dimming. For example, in see-through AR, Liquid-Crystal based ambient dimming can be employed to ensure sufficient contrast of projected virtual images in bright environments, particularly when the projected objects need to appear dark. In general, and depending on the selection of LC material and architecture, liquid crystal cells can steer, modulate and even focus light.
Liquid crystal cells have been made on glass for years, but for many applications, glass is not desirable because of its weight, thickness, fragility, or lack of conformability. Thinner and lighter LC solutions are needed, particularly in applications such as varifocal lenses and ambient dimming for AR/VR.
With a focus on AR ambient dimming, we will describe the flexible LC optics platform technology we have developed, its attributes and applications, and how this compares to other approaches. Based on ultra-thin TAC (Tri Acetyl Cellulose), with and without OTFT functionality, these active optical films are extremely thin and light and can be 3D (biaxially) formed or stacked together to create powerful and combined functions.
Enhancing Waveguide Performance: Exploring Advanced Optical Materials
This presentation will cover the latest developments in optical materials for AR/VR/MR devices. The key materials are high refractive index nanoimprint materials and high refractive index light absorbing black materials. With the inkjet nanoimprint materials coating film thicknesses can be locally controlled to obtain the locally optimized film thicknesses for the specific nanoimprint process. The inkjet process allows a more controlled way to optimize the residual layer thickness and total efficiency of the waveguide. Internal reflections within the AR waveguide are a major source of reduced optical contrast. The index matching light absorbing coating provides a simple solution for controlling the internal reflections. When high refractive index substrate edges are coated with matching refractive index light absorbing coatings, there is a reduction in reflected and scattered light compared to non-RI matched solutions.
The Strengths and Weaknesses of the Common AR Optics and Displays
The presentation will give a quick overview the common optical designs and display devices used in AR systems today including their advantages and disadvantages. The presentation will include a discussion of which optical designs and display devices work well together. The optics designs include large combiner (bug-eye), birdbath, freeform, diffractive waveguide, reflective waveguide, and holographic mirror. The display devices include LCOS, DLP, LCD, Micro-OLED, and MicroLED.
Ivo Yves Vieira
HIDO for MR displays
VP of Eyepiece Engineering
Building High Performance, Scalable Waveguide Combiners
Magic Leap’s vertically integrated waveguide combiner production solution has enabled a revolutionary AR display, scaled with high yield and low cost. This presentation will examine the strategy and key capabilities needed to manufacture large field of view diffractive waveguide combiners with high efficiency, contrast, sharpness, and color uniformity. Magic Leap’s team of optical designers and process engineers have continuously redefined design rules and evolved diffractive waveguide designs with proprietary diffractive waveguide design tools in combination with proprietary Jet and Flash Imprint Lithography (J-FIL) Technology based on custom formulated, in-house imprint resist, low-cost sub-masters, and custom high-precision equipment. Precision engineers designing custom equipment, in collaboration with a team of process engineers utilizing statistical process techniques, deliver robust process capability, low-cost process solutions that cannot be sourced anywhere else in the world. To ensure consistent high-volume production, Magic Leap relies on our deep understanding of the correlation between optical and process performance measured through rigorously designed optical test equipment running custom algorithms. This vertical integration from design to high-volume manufacturing allows us to deliver high-performance, low-cost waveguide combiners on a rapid timeline.
System Engineer and Product Manager
LBS in AR Glasses
Mirage Hyperchromatica GmbH
Research & Development Manager
New methods for generation of multifocal images for AR Head-Up Display applications
Current multifocal Augmented and Extended Reality (AR & XR) technologies make use of headwear and pointing devices. Such devices usually can cause discomfort due to vergence-accommodation conflict (VAC) or spatial mismatch between virtual and real objects. The mismatch happens because of different motion parallax values among other things.
These adverse effects create safety and usability concerns in many applications, especially in automotive space where fast moving objects must be highlighted and processed.
We review different technologies and methods to generate multi-focal images and contrast them to a novel technique of hyperchromatic imaging. This technique is based on optics with strong chromatic dispersion that separates images generated by lasers with different wavelengths in 3-dimensional space.
Hyperchromatic imaging methods can generate multi-focal images with only passive components and reduce the VAC creating more inclusive and safe AR applications, as well as reducing reaction and focusing times, compared to existing solutions.
Jessica van Heck
The power of free-form micro-optics for AR /VR / MR applications
Laser Beam Scanning for Near-to-Eye Display Applications: Synopsis of Architectural, Optical, Photonic and System Considerations
The University of Arizona
Multiplexed image-transfer and dynamic image-steering for Augmented Reality Applications with Texas Instruments Digital Micromirror Device
We address FOV expansion techniques in wavelength, polarization, angular, and illumination multiplexing/de-multiplexing enabled by high-speed MEMS-based display, Texas Instruments Digital Micromirror Device.
Micro Mechanical Electronics System based Spatial Light Modulators (MEMS-SLM) enables unique capability “Just in time image delivery” or steering images to where and when images are needed. The image steering-based display is uniquely categorized between the point-by-point laser retinal scanner and conventional micro display-lens based image formation. The image steering solves challenges dominated by classical tradeoffs in AR optics, such as image FOV, resolution and display size or form factor of optical engine.
The World’s first curved waveguide for Augmented Reality with pupil replication and ability to fit into prescription lenses
We will describe our invention of the world’s first curved waveguide system for Augmented Reality showing pupil replication in only one direction, but giving a 10 mm by 8 mm eye box. We also show how the curved waveguide can be fitted into prescription spectacle lenses, how the curved waveguide scrambles the image to the outside world, giving much better confidentiality and security.
Holographic displays for AR/VR systems
Team Lead Analyst
A Market Overview About AR & VR: Are They Bound To Grow?
VP Business Development
Tunable optics for AR/VR applications
We explore applications for tunable optics in AR/VR systems, looking at both camera and display applications. Features of several variable optic systems are discussed, and a piezo based tunable optic is presented.