KAIST team develops tiny camera inspired by insect eyes

Insect eyes have inspired a new tiny, ultra-thin camera that could be used in surveillance and endoscopy in the future.

Researchers at The Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), say the ultracompact camera captures high-contrast and high-resolution images and was based on the eye structures of paper wasp species Xenos peckii. 

Led by Professor Ki-Hun Jeong, the team says the camera is packaged with micro-optical elements such as inverted micro-lenses, multilayerd pinhole arrays and gap spacers on the image sensor. It has a total track length of 740 μm and a field of view of 73-degrees.

According to reports from the research university, the camera has successfully demonstrated high-contrast clear array images acquired from tiny micro lenses. The team say they further enhanced the image quality of the captured image by combining the arrayed images into one image through super-resolution imaging.

On the KAIST website, Professor Jeong said: “This research has led to technological advances in imaging technology. We will continue to strive to make significant impacts on multidisciplinary research projects in the fields of microtechnology and nanotechnology, seeking inspiration from natural photonic structures.”

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