Varioptic Liquid Lens For Phone Cameras

Varioptic and Sunny Optics announced last week that they were making the Varioptic Arctic 416 autofocus oil and water lens available in high-end camera phones. The oil and water lens, which has no moving parts, replaces traditional mechanical lens focusing systems.


(Oil and water lens uses electrowetting)

The Varioptic oil and water lens uses a phenomenon called "electrowetting" to focus the system. A water droplet is deposited on a metal substrate covered by an insulating layer. The voltage applied to the substrate modifies the contact angle of the droplet. A liquid lens uses two liquids with the same density; one is an insulator while the other is a conductor. The variation of voltage leads to a change of curvature of the liquid-liquid interface, which in turn leads to a change of the focal length of the lens.

Liquid lenses have many advantages over their mechanical counterparts, including ruggedness (no moving parts), faster response, excellent optical quality, wide operating temperature range and very low energy consumption (ideal for small mobile devices).

Science fiction fans have been waiting for this since Frank Herbert wrote about oil lenses in his 1964 classic Dune:

Paul lay ... in a slit of rock high on the shield wall rim, eye fixed to the collector of a Fremen telescope. The oil lens was focused on a starship lighter exposed by dawn in the basin below them.
(Read more about oil lens from Dune)

Philips is also working on this technology (there may be some patent fights involved); see Philips FluidFocus: Variable Focus Fluid Lens. Varioptic is ramping up production in (where else) Shanghai and expects to produce 100,000 lenses per month in addition to the production in its plant in Lyon, France. Read more in the 2MP Autofocus Camera Module with Varioptic Liquid Lens press release and Varioptic comes into focus with liquid phone camera lenses.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 2/18/2007)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Engineering ")

ODYSSEUS Solar-Powered Stratospheric Plane Flies Forever
'The planes flew continuously, twenty-four hours a day...' - EB White, 1950.

Phil Nuyttnn's City Under The Sea
''Under the lower roof there was no water, but a clear and luminous atmosphere...' - Andre Laurie, 1895.

Stick-On Tape Speakers, As Predicted By Bruce Sterling
Flexible tape speakers, someday.

Has Climate Change Already Been Solved By Aliens?
'I had explained," said Nessus, "that our civilisation was dying in its own waste heat.' - Larry Niven, 1970.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Wound Healing With Wearable Nanogenerators
'... forcing the energy transfer which allowed him to ... erase the other internal-external damage.'

Flying Dragon Robot Transforms In Mid-Air
Terrific prototype video.

Negative Matter Fluid Theorized In New Paper
'Of course, being negative matter, when you push it, it comes toward you..'

Grow Structures Upon Planetfall - Myco-Architecture
'They'll also start pulling in gases and liquids from the local atmosphere...'

MXene Hydrogel Skin For Robots Flexes And Senses
'The plastex swam and whirled like boiling toothpaste...'

EXPLORER, The First Total-Body Scanner
'The object is built up of an infinite series of plane layers, at the focus of the ray...'

UK Police AI To Stop Criminals Before They Strike
'... the computing mechanisms that studied and restructured the incoming material.'

Sonitus Audio Interface Positioned Beyond The Noise
'... an instrument having relatively small bit pieces adapted to be gripped between the teeth.'

Volvo's Self-Driving Mining Trucks
'A procession of automatic ore carts was racing over the bleak slag'

Audi Pop.Up Autonomous Electric Flying Car
'The cab was an egg-shaped bubble of light metals and plastics...'

Music Not Impossible (MNI) Vibrotactile Wearable Experience
Don't you want to experience the 'feely' effects?

Chinese Face Recognition Mistakes Bus Ad For Jaywalker
'... the imprint of her image on the telephoto cell.'

A Look Back At Apollo's Emergency Escape Vehicle
'A simple mechanism... it drove the iron ball through space like a ship.'

InMotion Glide 3 Electric Unicycle For The Last Mile
'...gyro-stabilized on a single wheel.'

China's Social Credit System - A Facebook-1984 Mashup
'Prestige, face, mana, repute, glory: the Sirenese word is strakh.'

Musk Declares Tesla Supercharger Capacity Will Double By Next Year
'Recharge the batteries... in almost every town and village...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.