Researchers create smart contact lenses that can be charged with tears

A team of researchers has devised a new way for smart contact lenses to charge using the natural water generated from the human eyeball.

1 minute & 59 seconds read time

Scientists from Singapore have designed a new way to keep smart contact lenses charged without the inclusion of wireless charging.

Researchers create smart contact lenses that can be charged with tears 90909

It seems like it's only a matter of time before the masses widely adopt smart contact lenses, and whether or not that's in the immediate future or 20 years from now, humans are going to have to think of a way to keep these contact lenses powered. A team of researchers from Singapore may have found the solution, and according to a newly penned paper, the scientists created a new battery that's comprised of biocompatible material, along with a glucose coating that reacts with sodium and chloride ions to generate electricity.

Both sodium and chloride ions are found in human tears. The researchers took the new battery and proved it was capable of generating 45 microamperes at a maximum output of 201 microwatts, which they say is enough to power their smart contact lenses. If you think this is the breakthrough humanity needs to adopt smart contact lenses, you'd be sadly wrong, as the researchers' current design of smart contact lenses is only capable of being charged 200 times before it no longer works.

"Although wireless power transmission and supercapacitors supply high power, their integration presents a significant challenge due to the limited amount of space in the lens. By combining the battery and biofuel cell into a single component, the battery can charge itself without the need for additional space for wired or wireless components," said co-author Li Zongkang, a PhD student at NTU

However, the technology created certainly demonstrates the potential of devising smart contact lenses that are powered through the wearer's tears.


Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science, space, and artificial intelligence news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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