Micro-optics Lens Array-Based Eyepiece and Objective Lens
Navy SBIR FY2008.2

Sol No.: Navy SBIR FY2008.2
Topic No.: N08-160
Topic Title: Micro-optics Lens Array-Based Eyepiece and Objective Lens
Proposal No.: N082-160-0268
Firm: Physical Optics Corporation
Applied Technologies Division
20600 Gramercy Place, Bldg.100
Torrance, California 90501
Contact: Alexander Parfenov
Phone: (310) 320-3088
Web Site: www.poc.com
Abstract: In response to Navy Naval Special Warfare Visual Augmentation Systems (VAS) Program needs for developing and prototyping microlens array (MLA) optical components such as eyepiece lenses with wide field of view to be used in Night Vision Goggles (NVGs), Physical Optics Corporation (POC) proposes to develop a new Micro Optics Lens Array-based eyepiece and objective lens (MOLA) for NVG with increased field of view (>40 deg) based on a unique combination of coaxially and concentrically arranged MLA to achieve compact form factor and with the eye box size of up to 40 mm. In addition, POC's innovative MLA self-aligned assembly technique by molding, requiring high-precision alignment of these components, can be easily achieved. In Phase I, POC will develop a design of MOLA and prove the feasibility of the proposed approach by demonstrating prototypes of an optical component using commercial-off-the-shelf MLA technology and analyses of performance in comparison to conventional bulk optics for NVGs. In Phase II, POC will finalize the design, development, and evaluation of MOLA prototypes for a traditional NVG device and develop and evaluate a MOLA eyepiece components for a wide horizontal field of view (>80 deg) NVG.
Benefits: Military applications of the MOLA NVG optics will include new advanced low profile and lightweight NVG and helmet/head-mounted display (HMD) devices for pilots and landforces. The MOLA NVG optics can be incorporated by the U.S. Air Force, Army, and Coast Guard, into their NVG and HMD devices, such as panoramic NVGs, and be used as well for the training programs that will benefit from the MOLA NVG optics technology. The MOLA NVG optics project will also benefit the display industry because it provides a new instrument for building head-mounted displays and will address the huge virtual reality/visual simulation (VizSim) market, which is over $43B worldwide, and is growing by 9.8% annually.