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Press Release 08-132
The Shape of Things to Come

Flexible web of micro-sensors enables eye-shaped camera, heralds new class of electronics technology that can conform to almost any shape

Back to article | Note about images

Photo of the electronic-eye camera.

The electronic-eye camera developed by researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Northwestern University. The array of pixels is visible through the magnified image created by the lens.

Credit: Beckman Institute, University of Illinois


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John Rogers of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign describes the new camera he helped develop that is based on the structure of the human eye. Rogers explains the idea behind the camera, how it is crafted, the benefits of the device over existing cameras, and how the same technology can be used for a range of devices, including flexible sensors and prosthetics.

Credit: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign/Northwestern University/National Science Foundation

 

Yonggang Huang of Northwestern University describes the new retina-like camera sensor and how a careful study of the properties of materials allowed the team to move beyond the rigid, planar camera chips common in today's digital cameras and instead create a flexible array of photosensitive pixels.

Credit: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign/Northwestern University/National Science Foundation

 

Photo showing the actual image of an eye obtained with the new 256-pixel electronic eye camera.

This color picture of an eye is an actual image obtained with the new 256-pixel electronic eye camera. The curved surface rendering at the top corresponds to the image extracted directly from the camera, while a planar projection of the image appears below.

Credit: Beckman Institute, University of Illinois


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Image showing silicon focal plane array and electronics on a hemispherical transfer element.

This image, captured during the electronic eye fabrication process, shows a silicon focal plane array (dark brown) and electronics on a hemispherical transfer element (translucent).

Credit: Beckman Institute, University of Illinois


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Low magnification SEM image of interconnected Si photodetector pixels and electronics on substrate.

Low magnification scanning electron micrograph of a collection of silicon photodetector pixels and electronics interconnected by arc-shaped ribbons, on a hemispherical substrate. These interconnects bow upward to accommodate the large mechanical strains needed to transform the planar layouts in which the systems are initially fabricated to the hemispherical geometries needed for implementation in the electronic eye. The image is colorized: pixel elements and interconnects appear gold; the substrate appears light blue.

Credit: Beckman Institute, University of Illinois


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High magnification SEM image of interconnected Si photodetector pixels and electronics on substrate.

This high magnification scanning electron micrograph shows a small cluster of silicon photodetector pixels and electronics interconnected by arc-shaped ribbons, all on a hemispherical substrate. These interconnects bow upward to accommodate the large mechanical strains needed to transform the planar layouts in which the systems are initially fabricated to the hemispherical geometries needed for implementation in the electronic eye. The image is colorized: pixel elements and interconnects appear gold; the substrate appears light blue.

Credit: Beckman Institute, University of Illinois


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Close-up of the silicon photodetector pixels and electronics interconnected by arc-shaped ribbons.

This image shows a close-up view of the silicon photodetector pixels and electronics interconnected by arc-shaped ribbons. The scale bar represents 10 micrometers (millionths of a meter).

Credit: Northwestern University and University of Illinois


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