Visual impairments and blindness affect millions of people globally. According to the World Health Organization, 39 million people are blind and 246 million have low visions, globally. Now, a company by the name of eSight is stepping into the game to assist in restoring eyesight to the legally blind through a new feat of engineering.
According to the company, the glasses can adapt to any situation and maintain peripheral sight. While the company knew their goal, the engineering challenge was to electronically optimize the minimal useable vision that exists in people with low vision so they can more fully participate in everyday life.
This from Tech Times:
The devices use a prescription lens frame, holding a headset. A hand controller is used to adapt a live video stream, optimizing an LED display, placed directly in front of the eyes of a user. These controls permit the operator to adjust contrast, brightness, and color of the image, in order to provide better vision.
To enhance the comfort and lighten the weight of the headset, a four hour battery pack is housed in a separate controller that can be worn on the belt or placed in a customized pouch. The glasses are also bioptic, so they can provide a full field of view, as well as providing comprehensive peripheral vision.
This from Engineering.com:
The video camera is a key element in the system. It’s composed of a lens, focus motor, five megapixel image sensor and rangefinder. The rangefinder feeds distance information to the data unit. The data unit in turn drives the focus motor, allowing sharp, high contrast image capture in real time (<100 milliseconds).
eSight’s glasses have allowed Kathy Beitz, a woman suffering from Stargardt disease, to see her newborn baby for the first time. Mark Cornell, an army veteran, was also able to see more clearly after being legally blind for 20 years.
However, the glasses do not work for those who are completely blind, just those with low vision. The headset costs about $15,000, but eSight offers financial assistance to those who apply.