Brendon Bussy

The Possibility of Self Adjustable Spectacle Lenses

Posted in Design, Invention, Materials by Brendon Bussy on June 6, 2011

Having worn glasses forever and heavily dependent on them – I can’t see what I’m typing now if I remove my specs, I’ve always wondered what I would do if I didn’t have access to an optometrist. Or worse, access to any of the technology required to have 20/20 vision.

So I find the initiative to make self adjustable lenses quite inspiring. And also to discover that someone’s been working on it for a while already. The innovator of note is Joshua Silver and the organisation of note is the Centre for Vision in the Developing World.

Have a look at the various approaches here which range from lens kits to fluid filled lenses which can be adjusted by increasing or decreasing fluid pressure.

Here’s the man himself wearing a pair of the fluid adjustable types. Note the (removable) syringes for lens adjustment.

Here’s a close-up:

Clunky, yes, but as this blogger pointed out, this is the the model T prototype, which will certainly improve with later iterations.  And so far many have already benefited from even this basic model. Here’s a happy customer:

and another one:

Of course we’re not speaking about a lens that can be made from scratch from stuff we find lying around, but at least this reduces the need for access to an optical lab.

Now all we need is to address my pet gripe – the wastefulness and unnecessary expense of frame replacement every time lenses are replaced.  Anyone working on an infinitely adjustable spectacle frame?

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