Scientists at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology have managed to create a prosthetic eye that is capable of accurately mimicking the shape and more importantly, the behaviour of a real eye.
To create the prosthetic eye, scientists used a hemispherical aluminum oxide membrane to act as the retina and lined it with light-sensitive nanowires. This means that when the eye is exposed to light, it will be activated and transmit electrical signals. They then filled the middle of the eye with a conductive fluid that mimics the vitreous humor (the gel between the lens and retina).
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Scientists found that the artificial eye is able to respond faster to the visible light spectrum than a human eye.
However, its 100-degree diagonal viewing angle isn’t as wide as the 130 degrees viewing angle of a real eye. The cost of manufacturing the prosthetic eye is also quite expensive and time-consuming. Although with advancements in technology and further research done into the field, scientists could come up with a quick and cost-effective way to mass-produce these eyes.
The prosthetic eye is currently powered by an external power source, but scientists hope they could one day power the eye using nothing than solar power, according to Ubergizmo.