Lemoptix Microprojector

Miniature device could allow a cell phone to project images on a wall | KurzweilAI

A new one-cubic-centimeter projector head that can be integrated into a portable computer or mobile telephone has been developed by  Lemoptix, a spin-off of Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL), and the Maher Kayal Laboratory.

The projector uses very little energy, requiring on average 30% less current than the matrix- or LED-based technology currently available on the market. It should be available in 2011 for industrial applications, and the following year for consumer electronics, according to Nicolas Abelé, Technical Director of the start-up.

Researchers develop tiny projector (w/ Video)

The projector of the future, 1 cm3 of technology that can be integrated into a portable computer or mobile telephone, is about to take the market by storm.

This pocket works at a minimum distance of 50 centimeters, and enables the projection of images onto a surface equivalent to a 15-inch screen. During the last few months, the Lemoptix team has considerably improved the architecture of the optical head containing the laser light sources and the MEMS mirrors, thereby reducing the size of the whole device and its energy consumption. The manufacturing and assembly processes have also been defined, and the first sub-contractors identified. The company succeeded in raising 1.4 million Swiss francs of new funds at the end of August.

YouTube - The pocket beamer is a reality!

Maher Kayal, professor at EPFL's Institute of Electrical Engineering presents the beamer of the future: 1 cm3 of technology that can be integrated into a portable computer or mobile telephone. Nicolas Abélé, technical director of Lemoptix, explains the future developments of this new device.

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Lemoptix - Microprojector

MEMS Projection Principle

The uniqueness of the MEMS scanning mirror for projection is the ability to continuously scan from left to right and top to bottom, therefore enabling the use of a single MEMS mirror instead of a mirror matrix with a large number of digital mirrors.

The image/video is displayed by pulsing three laser light sources, Red Blue and Green, during the mirror scan, resulting in the creation of the image pixel-by-pixel. This proven projection principle is higly robust, as it has been used for decades in the CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) televisions.

The image color is achieved by mixing the three basic RGB colors with a so-called beam-combiner, largely used and validated in the medical eye-surgery industry.

What Could A Credit Card-Sized Projector Mean For Gaming?

Imagine a portable gaming device without a traditional screen using the projector to allow you to play your games wherever you please. Or integrating a camera with the projector to bring augmented reality games to an entirely new level, projecting the game itself into reality, instead of the other way around. Hell, you could create a gaming helmet with a transparent visor you could project first-person shooter HUDs onto.

With Lemoptix looking into creating an interactive version of the projector that would allow users to manipulate the screen using their hands, the micro-projector looks like a device that's definitely going to have a hand in the future of gaming.