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Swiss labs build credit card-sized projector for cellphones, operating rooms, and more


We're used to seeing far-out technology from Swiss firm EPFL, from glider / robots to thought-controlled wheel chairs, and now it looks like a spin-off company of the labs, Lemoptix, has greatly upped the pico projector stakes with one such device that rocks a projector head a mere cubic centimeter, with the whole thing squeezing into an area smaller than a credit card. According to research director Maher Kayal, the device uses "tiny mirrors of less than a millimeter's thickness. Positioned on a silicon (wafer) disc, they reflect red, blue and green laser beams," to project VGA (640 x 480) images onto a surface equivalent to a 15-inch screen. Possible uses range from consumer electronics such as cellphones and PMPs, HUDs for automobiles, and even operating rooms, where medical info can be projected onto the surgeon's work area, reducing the time he spends looking at a screen. There's no telling what the cost will be, but you can look forward to seeing it hit the shelves "early next year."

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