The developers of the research division of Facebook has unveiled a prototype VR glasses with flat screens. Instead of conventional lenses to focus the image used holographic multi-layer film. In its current form the prototype, made in the shape and size of sunglasses, works with an external laser transmitter and indicates a monochrome image, but the engineers have already created more massive screens with a similar design working in color mode. Article about development will be presented at SIGGRAPH 2020, the authors also talked about it in the blog of the company.
Almost all serial VR-helmets similar to each other — large blocks that are attached to the eyes and nose, and fixed on the head. They have a large size and wear them is uncomfortable, because the center of gravity is shifted forward from the face. The reason for this lies in the classic optical concept with a screen and a thick lens, and remote from the screen to focus the image in the eye. To solve this problem, engineers have to invent an alternative optical schemes. For example, recently the developers of Intel showed a prototype of a compact VR-helmet with a field of view of 180 degrees horizontally. This result was achieved by replacing the conventional lens array of microlenses.
Andrew Maiman (Andrew Maimone) and Jun Ren Wang (Wang Junren) Reality of Facebook Labs unveiled a prototype VR glasses with ultra-compact optical design, the thickness is 8.9 mm. In the development there are two main new element that allowed us to achieve such characteristics.