Forward-looking: For those who aren’t fans of wearing glasses, contact lenses are a fantastic alternative option. But scientists have found a way to make them even more impressive: allowing users to zoom in on objects just by blinking twice.
Scientists at the University of California, San Diego, created the amazing soft contact lens by measuring the electrooculographic signals that are generated when eyes make movements such as up and down, left and right, and blinking. Even when the eye is closed, or you’re in total darkness, these electrical impulses can still be generated.
“Even if your eye cannot see anything, many people can still move their eyeball and generate this electro-oculographic signal,” lead researcher Shengqiang Cai told New Scientist.
The lens that the scientists created is able to change its focal length depending on the signals the eye generates. They used dielectric elastomer to deform the soft lens, allowing the focal length to change by as much as 32 percent. This lets the lens zoom in on something just by blinking twice.
The researchers said the invention could have applications in "visual prostheses, adjustable glasses, and remotely operated robotics in the future." Whether it ends up being used by the military and government organizations remains to be seen, but you can imagine the potential of having what are essentially mini-binoculars built into soldiers' and spies' eyes.
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