Creates Vertical Solution for AR/VR Head Mounted Displays (HMD) with Corrective Lenses
HALIFAX, NS, Feb. 2, 2021 /CNW/ – Metamaterial Inc. (“Company” or “META”) (CSE: MMAT) a developer of high-performance functional materials and nanocomposites, today announced it has acquired specialized lens casting production equipment and intellectual property, including 35 patents, from Interglass Technology AG (Switzerland) for USD 800,000. META will invest and expand its capabilities in design, development, and manufacturing of ARfusion™ products for smart eyewear. This highly integrated solution combines embedded metamaterial and functional film elements with precision cast corrective lenses, which are required by over 50% of potential users in the market.
“One of the challenges in augmented reality (AR) eyeglasses, which Mark Zuckerberg so eloquently pointed out as a category killer, is to ensure that light from the AR display does not make the wearer look like an automaton, due to user-display-lit eye glow – especially at night. META successfully pioneered laser and security eyeglass filtering, to combat powerful pen pointers, for our customers like Airbus. Under a new brand name, ARfusion™, we are now applying that proven technology and other functionality directly encapsulated into eyeglasses, to compliment waveguide-based displays similar to HoloLens®,” noted Jonathan Waldern, Chief Technology Officer. “The AR eyeglass display is one of the most complex engineering challenges of our time, and only advanced metamaterials, incorporated into the eyeglass lenses, will likely provide an acceptable solution.”
“Any augmented and virtual reality eyewear solution, whether from a major OEM or a startup, will need to address the need for prescription lenses. ARfusion™ will combine the Interglass platform with META’s technology to offer embedded metamaterial solutions for on demand precision casting of prescription lenses. In addition, the associated patents would be valuable to any company participating in this eyewear market. On the same production system, we will be able to offer embedded functionality such as combiners, waveguides, and eye tracking sensors. These same integrated lenses can also enable much more compact HMDs for virtual reality,” said Gardner Wade, Chief Product Officer.
Interglass Assets Include Specialized Equipment, 35 Patents in Ten Patent Families
Combining the technology, equipment, and IP from Interglass with META’s metamaterial design and nanofabrication platform is expected to provide more elegant, powerful, and fully integrated solutions across a range of HMD applications. META is acquiring from Interglass Technology AG (in liquidation) lens casting equipment and related workstations and software, tools, and test equipment, along with intellectual property including patents, trademarks, know-how, technical data, proprietary software, designs, and trade secrets. Interglass has 35 international patents in the field of casting processes for high-quality plastic lenses or other optical components based on UV curing acrylics. Moreover, the Interglass process is highly sustainable, which will help to support META’s sustainability initiatives.
ARfusion™ Benefits: Performance and Sustainability
ARfusion™ lenses are directly cast into the final correction using a library of more than 2,000 prescription molds. This requires significantly less material, energy and water compared to conventional production, which involves milling and grinding an oversized lens blank. The ARfusion™ production process requires a fraction of the energy. Typically, a corrective lens is cured in about 50 hours at >100° C – the ARfusion™ technology just needs 10 seconds. Since ARfusion™ lenses are poured and do not need grinding, no water is required in the production process. The ARfusion™ coating process, based on plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD), is environmentally friendly and achieves superior scratch and abrasion resistance without using wet chemistry.
ARfusion™ allows functional metamaterial films to be directly encapsulated within a prescription lens, supporting applications in Augmented and Virtual Reality (AR/VR) as well as a range of features including integrated see-through dimming to manage battery life, eye tracking to optimize resolution, latency and 5G data bandwidth, focusing and eye glow management. These films not only perform optical origami but combine to form a solid-state lens able to withstand the shock and environmental conditions for everyday work or consumer use.
META Joins LOT Network
Combining its existing portfolio with the Interglass acquisition, META now owns more than 160 patents. To protect these valuable assets, META has joined LOT Network, an international community of the world’s leading high-tech companies committed to protecting its members from costly patent troll litigation. LOT Network currently protects more than 1,100 members in 36 countries from litigation from over 3 million worldwide patents. Members include market leaders such as Covestro, IBM, Toyota, Visa, Canon, Google, Tesla, Cisco, Amazon, Microsoft, Alibaba, and Salesforce, as well as other innovative companies across industries.
About Metamaterial Inc.
META is changing the way we use, interact with, and benefit from light and other forms of energy. META designs and manufactures advanced materials and performance functional films which are engineered at the nanoscale to control light and other forms of energy. META is an award winning Global Cleantech 100 company with products that support sustainability by doing more with less; they encompass lightweight, sustainable raw materials and processes which consume less energy and offer more performance. META has a growing patent portfolio and is currently developing new materials with diverse applications in concert with companies in the automotive, aerospace, energy, consumer electronics and medical industries. META is headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia and has R&D and Sales offices in London, UK and Silicon Valley. For additional information on META, please visit www.metamaterial.com.
Forward Looking Information
This release includes forward-looking information within the meaning of Canadian securities laws regarding the Company and its business, which may include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to the business strategies and operational activities of the Company. Often but not always, forward-looking information can be identified by the use of words such as “expect”, “intends”, “anticipated”, “believes” or variations (including negative variations) of such words and phrases, or state that certain actions, events or results “may”, “could”, “would” or “will” be taken, occur or be achieved. Such statements are based on the current expectations and views of future events of the management of the Company and are based on assumptions and subject to risks and uncertainties. Although the management of the Company believes that the assumptions underlying these statements are reasonable, they may prove to be incorrect. The forward-looking events and circumstances discussed in this release may not occur and could differ materially as a result of known and unknown risk factors and uncertainties affecting the companies, including risks regarding the ability of the Company to invest and expand it capabilities in design, development and manufacturing of metaFUSION products, the ability to incorporate advanced metamaterials into eyeglass lenses, the ability to integrate the Interglass platform with META’s technology, the performance and sustainability of metaFUSION, and the ability of LOT to protect the Company’s intellectual property. Although the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results to differ from those anticipated, estimated or intended. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements or information. No forward-looking statement can be guaranteed. Except as required by applicable securities laws, forward-looking statements speak only as of the date on which they are made and the Company does not undertake any obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.
The CSE has neither approved nor disapproved the contents of this news release.
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