Bionic Vision Technologies: A Closer Look at the Bionic Eye System

How It Works

BVT’s Bionic Eye System consists of a wearable device and visual implant similar in concept and design to that used by cochlear hearing implants.  It operates by translating images from a camera mounted on an eyeglass frame into electrical signals which stimulate the nerves via electrodes placed behind the retina (in the suprachoroidal space), to deliver visual information to the brain.  A more comprehensive description of this process is as follows:

1. Camera captures images in real-time

2. Images sent to processing unit

3. Encoded stimuli are then transferred to the implant via a wireless interface located under the scalp to the electrode array sitting in the suprachoroidal space. In this way, the electrical stimuli are delivered to the retina.

Designed for comfort and ease-of-use by blind patients, the external components of the BVT Bionic Eye System (eyewear, processing unit and stimulator) can be easily put on or taken off.   

To use the BVT System, first the user puts on the eyeglass frames containing the camera/sensor.  Then, the user magnetically connects the stimulator to the implanted receiver (located under the scalp). The magnetic connection between the stimulator and receiver creates a wireless transfer for the optimized electronic visual signals to be transmitted to the implanted electrode array behind the eye.  Finally, the user turns the System on or off by pushing a button located on the processor unit.