Plessey and WaveOptics announce strategic partnership using MicroLED display technology for Smart Glasses

In Augmented Reality and Mixed Reality News

February 5, 2020 – Plessey, an embedded technologies developer working in the microLED market for augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR) displays, has announced at Photonics West its partnership with WaveOptics, a designer and manufacturer of diffractive waveguides.

This partnership will focus on the creation of a new optical module, designed specifically for the next generation of smart glasses. The module will incorporate Plessey’s high brightness microLED, native green full HD display along with WaveOptics’ recently announced Katana waveguide technology and projector design. The companies claim that this module will be the smallest and lowest mass AR display module available on the market. 

According to the companies, “The next generation of AR and MR systems depends on a technological leap in the performance of the optical module. Advances in image quality, brightness, resolution, and efficient power consumption are sought after in order to make these new AR and MR systems a compelling practical and visual experience.” AR headsets that allow users to seamlessly transition between the bright outdoors to darker indoor environments require a display technology that can deliver both very high brightness and low power consumption for long battery life. Both Plessey and WaveOptics anticipate that their collaboration will help to deliver these necessary innovations, and that the reduction in size and power requirements in the module will enable enhanced features such as wireless transceivers for true, untethered AR applications.

“This partnership will create a new product opportunity for companies building AR wearables,” commented David Hayes, CEO WaveOptics. “For the first time, customers will be able to buy the lightest, ultra-low power module which combines the unique combination of WaveOptics and Plessey technologies. This is a crucial development to enable this technology to reach the consumer market in 2020.”

Mike Lee, President of Corporate and Business Development at Plessey said: “Our partnership with WaveOptics is a significant endorsement of Plessey’s GaN-on-Silicon microLED approach. Our microLED displays are recognized as being at the forefront in delivering the high-performance display panels demanded by AR and MR devices.”

Image credit: Plessey/WaveOptics

About the author

Sam Sprigg

Sam is the Founder and Managing Editor of Auganix. With a background in research and report writing, he has been covering XR industry news for the past seven years.