Facebook/Victor Tangermann
Slim and Refined

Facebook Built a VR Headset the Size of a Pair of Large Sunglasses

byVictor Tangermann
6. 30. 20
Facebook/Victor Tangermann

The green-and-black display is extremely cyberpunk.

VR 2.0

A team researchers at Facebook have created a virtual reality headset that’s not much larger than a chunky pair of sunglasses, Ars Technica reports.

The futuristic shades use a specially designed holographic film to miniaturize the lens. Conventional VR displays tend to be bulky, as the refractive lenses inside of them need a couple inches to focus the display for its wearer’s eyes.

The result is a pair of glasses that are at most only nine millimeters thick, according to the researchers, and weigh only 17.8 grams. Images from the glasses’ green-and-black display are, frankly, extremely cyberpunk.

The glasses can provide an approximately 90-degree horizontal field of view (human vision is just shy of 180 degrees), according to testing detailed in a new paper published by Facebook Research.

Advertisement

Laser Beams

The design also did away with the traditional LCD panels used in conventional VR headsets and uses lasers instead to create an image. That means pixel counting isn’t really an option, as Ars points out.

It’s still an early prototype with plenty of limitations. Since light rays from the backlight “fan out significantly before they are focused by the holographic beamsplitter surface,” large regions of the display “do not contribute to the display’s [field of view],” the researchers write in the paper.

The glasses are also still not capable of producing a full color image and exhibit “ghosting” around the edges of the field of view caused by optical surfaces reflecting light.

The team already has a plan to reduce weight even further. By switching to plastic substrates, the researchers expect to bring total weight to just 6.6 grams, about the weight of a pair of large aviator-style sunglasses.

Advertisement

READ MORE: How holographic tech is shrinking VR displays to the size of sunglasses [Ars Technica]

More on VR: A Tokyo Hospital Is Livestreaming Surgeries in Virtual Reality


Care about supporting clean energy adoption? Find out how much money (and planet!) you could save by switching to solar power at UnderstandSolar.com. By signing up through this link, Futurism.com may receive a small commission.

Share This Article

Copyright ©, Camden Media Inc All Rights Reserved. See our User Agreement, Privacy Policy and Data Use Policy. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with prior written permission of Futurism. Fonts by Typekit and Monotype.