LG Innotek said on Thursday that it was working on technologies related to metalens, which rival Samsung Electro-Mechanics was also working on.
LG Innotek CTO Kang Miseok, speaking at an industry conference in South Korea, confirmed the company was working on technology while speaking of how to apply nanotech and AI in an autonomous vehicle.
A metalens has nanoparticles aligned uniformly on the surface of a flat lens.
Though the lens is flat, the nanoparticles can bend the light instead. The technology allows lens and camera modules to become thinner compared to a conventional lens made out of glass and resins.
Lens thickness was very important in achieving low-power, small cameras for automobiles, Kang said.
Metalens was one way to maintain the optical characteristics while making the lens thinner, the CTO said. The ultimate aim was to develop an ultra-thin lens, he said.
Metalens could also be applied in mobile products and ultra-small cameras, not just in automobiles, Kang noted.
However, LG Innotek was collaborating with the industry and academia as it alone could not develop the technology, the CTO said, while also saying it was hard to estimate when the technology will be commercialized.
Kang also said liquid lens technology, which it was working on with Corning, was far away from being commercialized due to scalability and reliability issues.
A liquid lens, as its name suggests, has liquid housed within the lens that can be manipulated using electricity for various curvatures.
The lens doesn’t need to move around as the liquid is used for the job.