BOTHELL, Wash., Feb. 18 -- Microvision recently demonstrated a miniature display that uses three light-emitting diodes (LEDs) coupled with a vibrating mirror on a tiny micromechanical chip. The display platform could become the industry standard for personal displays, according to Russell Hannigan, Microvision's director of business development for advanced products.
Unlike displays that project images from a miniaturized screen, Microvision's display uses a single tiny mirror to scan a low-power beam of colored light across the eye, creating the effect of viewing a full-size screen. Because of the device's simplicity and small size, Microvision said it can deliver more performance at a lower cost versus competing miniature displays. This prototype display is a major milestone, according to Microvision, that can add functionality to consumer products like handheld wireless devices, gaming systems, portable DVD players and digital cameras.
Microvision's current demonstrator is a key step in developing a display platform suitable for consumer applications. The company will spend the next 18 to 24 months reducing the size, weight, power consumption and, especially, the cost of the display. The company is working with partners like Taipei's Walsin Lihwa Corp. to develop techniques to mass-produce the MEMS scanner, and with Cree, which produced the LED technology for the device.