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Battery-free eye tracking device fits on regular spectacles

A newly developed eye tracker can detect the trajectory, velocity and acceleration of the pupil with a high level of accuracy


Researchers at Dartmouth College in the US have developed a battery-free eye tracking prototype that can monitor fixation, smooth pursuit, saccade and blinking.

The technology will be discussed at MobiCom 2018, which is taking place in New Delhi, India currently (29 October to 2 November).

Project lead, Xia Zhou, from Dartmouth College, explained that the prototype is the first eye tracker that can fit onto regular spectacles and run without batteries.

“This is an exciting advancement for gamers, developers and other users of smart glasses,” she shared.

To remove the reliance on battery power, the device needed to be able to detect the trajectory, velocity and acceleration of the pupil without using a camera.

Scientists used near-infrared lights to light up the eye while photodiodes sensed patterns of reflected light.

The reflections were then used to calculate the pupil’s location and diameter using an algorithm.

The limited power that the device uses is harvested from indoor lighting by solar cells placed on the arms of the spectacles.

With further development, the technology could be used to identify health issues through continuous eye tracking.