STTR Phase I: Advanced Manufacturing Processes for Multiple Field Freeform Microlens Arrays for Ultra-Low Cost Medical Endoscopy

Period of Performance: 01/01/2015 - 06/30/2016

$225K

Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

Ohio Surgical Optics, LLC
5078 Ravenway Drive
North Ridgeville, OH 44039
Firm POC, Principal Investigator

Research Institution

The Ohio State University
1330 Kinnear Road
Columbus, OH 43212
Institution POC

Abstract

The broader impact/commercial potential of this Small Business Technology Transfer Research (STTR) Phase I project is that smaller and less expensive medical endoscopes will be made possible, which will allow physicians to see better inside the human body. These devices will shorten recovery times, improve diagnosis and treatment, move procedures from operating rooms to exam rooms, and lower health care costs. In addition, physicians will be able to visualize in parts of the body that were previously inaccessible. Health care will be improved throughout the world, particularly in developing countries. This project advances the state of the art in the design of micro-optics as well as their manufacture. Large arrays of tiny but precise lens components will be assembled in one operation, drastically reducing costs. The micro-optics and advanced manufacturing techniques developed in this project will also be applicable to other imaging systems. This project will develop new designs for micro-optics with a particular emphasis on medical endoscopes and new manufacturing techniques. High performance free-form optics that use multiple fields will be designed to produce images within acceptable limits for biomedical optics and be manufacturable. A high volume, precision manufacturing process will be developed for these optics. Wafer level assembly technology will be used to combine multiple arrays of micro-optic elements. Lens systems thus produced will be tested to determine whether they are within the design specification for mechanical and optical performance. Optical camera calibration and an image processing pipeline will be developed to combine the multiple fields and correct aberrations and produce accurate image reconstruction.