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Local 3D screen protector clinches Singapore engineering prize

Jack Loo | Sept. 18, 2013
Built for mobile devices, the EyeFly3D promises to replace the need for 3D glasses

A locally-developed screen protector for mobile devices that can replace cumbersome 3D glasses has won the Technology Innovation category at the recent Institution of Engineers Singapore (IES) Prestigious Engineering Achievement Awards 2013.

The EyeFly3D was first unveiled earlier this year by its creators, a team of researchers from Singapore government research unit Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE) and tertiary institute Temasek Polytechnic.

The IES award recognises Singapore-based engineering projects that demonstrate outstanding engineering skill and help better the quality of life.

"We are indeed delighted to have been given this award, which endorses our effort in always pushing the boundaries of technology through research & development, while raising the capability of our staff and students in the process," said Temasek Polytechnic's Deputy Principal, Lay-Tan Siok Lie.

The technology behind EyeFly3D is based on a simple concept of taking a regular plastic film and engineering about half a million uniform-sized mini lenses onto its surface, turning the plastic into an add-on screen protector that produces unprecedented, distortion-free, brilliant 3D content on mobile devices.

The researchers from IMRE and TP employ a combination of materials nanotechnology and integrated software, using a unique nanoimprinting process on the plastic - akin to making a waffle - to create an array of high resolution lenses.

"The versatile and industry-ready nanoimprinting technique allows us to rapidly develop research concepts and designs into functional prototypes that can easily be adapted to mass production," explained Dr Jaslyn Law, part of the award-winning team and the IMRE scientist who developed the base technology together with TP researchers.

Unlike some thicker glasses-free 3D filters, this award-winning technology does not affect the touchscreen sensitivity, brightness and resolution of the smartphones. At a mere 0.1mm, EyeFly3D is the first glasses-free 3D accessory that can display content in both portrait and landscape mode, doing away with the need for cumbersome 3D glasses and power-draining and costly built-in 3D screens.

"The award is a testament to an engineering breakthrough that has provided a local Singaporean company the opportunity to lead on the world stage. It also shows how Singapore can couple its creativity into a commercial proposition," said Nanoveu Founder and CEO, Alfred Chong.

The start-up is licensing the technology exclusively from the researchers, and will be rolling the product out to Europe, the USA, Japan and Australia in time for Christmas this year. China and other Asian markets will quickly follow in early 2014.


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