Manufacturing Application-Driven Foveated Near-Eye Displays

Traditional optical manufacturing poses a great challenge to near-eye display designers due to large lead times in the order of multiple weeks, limiting the abilities of optical designers to iterate fast and explore beyond conventional designs. We present a complete near-eye display manufacturing pipeline with a day lead time using commodity hardware. Our novel manufacturing pipeline consists of several innovations including a rapid production technique to improve surface of a 3D printed component to optical quality suitable for near-eye display application, a computational design methodology using machine learning and ray tracing to create freeform static projection screen surfaces for near-eye displays that can represent arbitrary focal surfaces, and a custom projection lens design that distributes pixels non-uniformly for a foveated near-eye display hardware design candidate. We have demonstrated untethered augmented reality near-eye display prototypes to assess success of our technique, and show that a ski-goggles form factor, a large monocular field of view (30o×55o), and a resolution of12cycles per degree can be achieved.

Kaan Akşit (NVIDIA)
Praneeth Chakravarthula (UNC)
Kishore Rathinavel (UNC)
Youngmo Jeong (NVIDIA)
Rachel Albert (NVIDIA)
Henry Fuchs (UNC)
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