‘Smart glass’ could end constant phone charging

London :Scientists including one of Indian-origin have designed a ‘smart glass’ that may substantially slash the energy required to power a smartphone.

The touchscreen material, invented by Bodie Technologies, a University of Oxford spin-off company, is based on the technology that is used for rewritable DVDs.

The material uses electrical pulses to create vivid, hi-tech displays that require no power and can be viewed clearly, even in direct sunlight.

The innovation threatens to shake up the smartphone and wearable device market, because more than 90 per cent of the battery power in a mobile device is used to illuminate its display.

“We can create an entire new market. You have to charge smartwatches every night, which is slowing adoption. But if you had a smartwatch or smart glass that did not need much power, you could recharge it just once a week,” Peiman Hosseini, founder of Bodie Technologies was quoted as saying by the Telegraph.

The scientists found that by sandwiching a seven nanometre thick layer of a phase change material (GST) between two layers of a transparent electrode they could use a tiny current to ‘draw’ images within the sandwich ‘stack’, ‘The Engineer’ reported.

Initially still images were created using an atomic force microscope but the team went on to demonstrate that such tiny ‘stacks’ can be turned into prototype pixel-like devices.

These ‘nano-pixels’ just 300 by 300 nanometres in size can be electrically switched ‘on and off’ at will, creating the coloured dots that would form the building blocks of an extremely high-resolution display technology.]

“This new approach allows us to create materials which can not only manipulate light very cleverly, but are also very cost-effective,” said Harish Bhaskaran, Associate Professor at Oxford & Founder Director at Bodle Technologies said.