Stanford University researchers have invented goggles that can send information to chips, which behave like solar cells, implanted into eye retinas. These new retinal implants would require far less invasive surgeries than the very limited options that are currently available. The “bionic eye” could help completely blind people see once again.

According to James Loudin, an electrical engineering professor at Stanford who took part in the study, the development of the specialized goggles and retinal implants took many years and involved technologies from four different academic departments. The system starts with the goggles, which have a miniature camera embedded in the nosepiece. Images from the camera are sent to a portable computer that is no larger than a smartphone. In turn the computer generates the video images that are transmitted into the eyes via infrared lasers inside the goggles’ lenses. The lasers then are reflected onto tiny photovoltaic chips embedded under the retinas. Biology then takes over from there as the retinas convert the light into an electrical current and send messages to the brain and allows the patient to see.

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About The Author

Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye is the founder and editor of GreenGoPost.com. Based in California, he is a business writer and consultant. His work is has also appeared on Triple Pundit , The Guardian's Sustainable Business site and has appeared on Inhabitat and Earth911. His focus is making the business case for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. He's pictured here in Qatar, one of the Middle East countries in which he takes a keen interest because of its transformation into a post-oil economy. Other areas of interest include sustainable development in The Balkans, Brazil and Korea. He was a new media journalism fellow at the International Reporting Project, for which he covered child survival in India during February 2013. Contact him at leon@greengopost.com. You can also reach out via Twitter (@LeonKaye) and Instagram (GreenGoPost). As of October 2013, he now lives and works in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.