Corning Precision glass solutions and WaveOptics sign long-term supply agreement for high-performance augmented reality optics

Collaboration enables better image quality for mass adoption of AR wearables. Corning the world’s supplier of high refractive index glass for eyewear, and WaveOptics, a designer and manufacturer of diffractive waveguides, have entered into a long-term supply agreement for augmented reality (AR) optics.

Corning will provide ultra-flat, high-index glass wafers for WaveOptics’ waveguides, the key optical component in AR wearable devices. WaveOptics’ specialized nano-structures will be imprinted on the glass wafers and made into waveguides using a well-defined manufacturing process.

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As part of the agreement, Corning will also provide its world-class materials science expertise to support WaveOptics’ continued advancements in waveguide manufacturing. “We believe that waveguide-based AR devices currently offer the best combination of user experience and sleek design,” said David Velasquez, who runs Corning Precision Glass Solutions.

We’re excited to work with WaveOptics to enable attractive, high-quality AR wearables, which will be key to increased adoption of this technology,” Velasquez said, “We love the opportunity to support their drive towards a high-volume supply chain.”

David Hayes, WaveOptics CEO, commented:
“Our waveguides meet a demanding technical specification that provides a comfortable viewing experience with crisp imagery displayed over a wide instantaneous field of view. Corning’s high-index glass has the characteristics that we need to enable the superior optical performance of our waveguide technology.

This collaboration enables us to access Corning’s expertise in applied materials science, which will allow us to maintain our leadership in the design and development of diffractive waveguides for AR wearables.”

WaveOptics’ waveguides are designed with superior optical performance and mass manufacturing in mind. The patented waveguide technology allows the creation of a large viewing window in which to experience AR, providing immersive AR experiences for industrial, enterprise, and consumer applications.

Corning has experience delivering mass-production quantities of ultra-flat, high-index glass for augmented reality device makers. Corning Augmented Reality Solutions are one of several products in Corning’s portfolio of Precision Glass Solutions that leverage the company’s precision optics and forming capabilities to address the emerging need for glass across microelectronics.

Corning provides customers with a one-stop shop for world-class capabilities including proprietary glass and ceramic manufacturing platforms, finishing processes, bonding technologies, best-in-class metrology, automated laser glass-cutting, and optical design expertise.