SCHOTT and WaveOptics Enter Into Strategic Supply Partnership

Article By : SCHOTT

WaveOptics, the leading designer and manufacturer of diffractive waveguides for Augmented Reality (AR) devices, has launched its new technology platform at the AR VR MR Expo at Photonics West 2020.

International technology group and the pioneer of optical glass SCHOTT, today announced at Photonics West 2020 that WaveOptics, a leading designer and manufacturer of waveguides for AR wearables, will base its new, ground-breaking next-generation waveguide technology initially with its Katana design, exclusively on the SCHOTT RealView™ product line of high-index glass wafers with 1.8 RI.

At only 7g and 1.15 mm in thickness, Katana is the latest addition to WaveOptics’ range of waveguide technology platforms that product designers can choose from, to deliver their desired augmented reality experiences.

At Photonics West, WaveOptics will present its new waveguide designs based on the 200 mm SCHOTT RealView™ glass wafers with a refractive index of 1.8. As a result of this partnership’s persistence in implementing a joint innovation roadmap, this platform provides a high level of manufacturing maturity, that enables mass market commercialisation.

A filled innovation pipeline: Displaying today what is going to be possible tomorrow

WaveOptics and SCHOTT are also engaged in a collaboration with two other enterprises to present the world’s first waveguides made on glass substrate with a refractive index of 1.9 . This also involves a matching nanostructured polymer from Inkron OY, produced on a 300 mm wafer-processing platform from EV Group (EVG) designed for mass production.

Another important milestone on the road to Consumer AR devices

SCHOTT RealView™ glass wafers with a high refractive index are key components of next-gen AR/MR headsets. The glass wafers are the basis for customers’ waveguides, and therefore are a key part of the AR/MR display unit that enables an immersive user experience (discover the 3-layered waveguide technology here). SCHOTT offers the broadest product portfolio of the industry with refractive indices from 1.5 to 1.9 at wafer diameters of 100, 150, 200, and 300 mm – with more to be expected from its active innovation pipeline. SCHOTT’s product quality and innovation power is based on world-class R&D experts, who are always on the trail of SCHOTT’s corporate DNA as the pioneer in optics since the year 1884. In-house developed metrology is the basis for quality improvement and product innovation. Cutting edge optical coatings designed specifically for waveguides and state-of-the-art laser processing capabilities complement SCHOTT’s product offer.

A glass innovation that inspires a whole industry

SCHOTT scientists and glass experts are constantly improving the quality of AR/MR-grade optical glass and fuelling the innovation pipeline with next-generation products in their German optical glass competence centers. Simultaneously, SCHOTT has proven mass production experience to consistently fulfil the highest quality demand of the industry prepared to serve the rapidly growing AR market. Being regarded as the key component for the full immersion experience, SCHOTT’s RealView™ glass wafers received the 2019 Display Industry Award for Display Component of the Year from the Society of Information Display, SID.

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