Eye camera could be used as a retina implant

October 1, 2008

A camera the size and shape of a human eye could have a diverse range of applications, including being used as a retinal implant and in brain monitoring and cardiac stimulation, according to research published in Nature.

A camera the size and shape of a human eye could have a diverse range of applications, including being used as a retinal implant and in brain monitoring and cardiac stimulation, according to research published in Nature.

John Rogers of the Beckman Institute at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, US and colleagues constructed the hemispherical camera from a stretchable sheet of “optoelectronics”, consisting of a mesh of silicon pixels connected by flexible plastic ribbon cables to create photodetector arrays. The mesh is transferred to a hemispherical rubber membrane, and then onto glass, where a hemispherical cap with lens is added.

Although the camera provides a wider field of view and fewer aberrations than flat cameras, currently it has only a few hundred pixels, limiting the sharpness of the images captured. The research team is currently collaborating with the University of Pennsylvania in the US to expand the abilities of the camera.