A team of Australian scientists developed what could be called the “window” towards miniature cameras: the thinnest lens in the world.
If you think a hair strand is thin and hard to see, try to make something out of this lens. It’s 1/2000th the width of a human hair! Of course, it can only be seen under a microscope but retains remarkable refractive properties despite its size.
Dr. Yuerui Lu from The Australian National University (ANU) thinks the lens is an important step into manufacturing flexible displays: “This type of material is the perfect candidate for future flexible displays. We will also be able to use arrays of micro lenses to mimic the compound eyes of insects.”
Besides its ability to emit photons, the crystal used to make the lens can survive at high temperatures, used as a lubricant and even work as a semiconductor. Dr. Lu and his colleagues’ work is definitely one to keep your eyes on in the near future as it can revolutionize “optical components and the integration of advanced optical functionalities.”