New competition to Google Glass will provide night vision capabilities, in addition to style.
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There are already a number of companies trying to compete with Google for a space in the new micro display glasses market. One such company is located in Israel, Lumus Optical, which has partnered with fellow Israeli company Opgal, which specializes in night vision technology.
Founded in 2000 by its chief technology officer, Dr. Yaakov Amitai, Lumus has developed a light guide optical element (LOE) technology for eye wear. The LOE is a patented optical waveguide that makes use of multiple partial reflectors embedded in a single substrate to reflect a virtual image into the eye of the wearer. The transparent display enables a virtual image to be seamlessly overlaid over the wearer’s real world view.
Based in Rehovot, Lumus first marketed the device in 2008. It aspires to be the Intel of the wearable display market, making fashionable glasses that in contrast to Google Glass, have a designer look.
Dr. Lapidot has a Phd in physics from the Weizman Institute where he once served as a member of the faculty. He holds more than 45 patents.
The CEO and chairman of Lumus’ board, Zvi Lapidot, co founded the company. He previously served as chairman of Orbot. Lapidot was once a senior research fellow at the Weizman Institute and has an Msc from the Technion in Haifa.
Founded in 1983, Opgal Optonic Industries specializes in the development of thermal imaging products and is based in Karmiel, Israel. Opgal currently markets products for the defense, security, industrial and aviation industries, such as thermal scope weapons’ sights and thermal imaging cameras for the military which enable soldiers to see in the dark.
Opgal’s most recent development, the Therm App , can convert mobile devices into night vision cameras.
Lumus will now utilize the Therm App mobile device and incorporate it into its eye wear. The two companies hope to be able to market the new device in only a few months time.
The president and CEO of Opgal, Amit Mattatia said of the co marketing deal, “The combination of these two breakthrough technologies — Therm-App night vision with Lumus wearable displays — presents an exciting and, more importantly, useful solution for professionals who require hands-free operation in complete darkness or limited visibility. This innovative solution provides security teams, search and rescue first responders and other types of professionals working in darkness with lightweight, portable and powerful night vision capabilities.
Chief product officer of Lumus, Dr. Eli Glickman said, “The combined solution of the Therm-App and Lumus eye wear demonstrates how our patented Light-guide Optical Element (LOE) technology allows for a new level of comfort, style and effectiveness for night vision applications, which can be utilized in numerous applications.”
Lumus currently offers three varieties of its glasses on the consumer market and a number of devices for professionals which are currently used by doctors, the military and many more.
Opgal is mainly a supplier of devices to professionals through direct marketing and not retail. The same people who utilize its night vision devices, such as the military and security, will certainly have a use for the new device.