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New Pancake Optics Technology for XR Announced by Kopin Corporation

Kopin Corporation, a company that specialises in the development of high-resolution displays and microdisplays. It caters solutions in several categories such as consumer, defence, medical and business products to its clients. It has made a recent announcement about its accomplishment of developing plastic Pancake optics that are capable of delivering a high level of performance for mixed reality (MR), augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) applications.

Kopin has applied for patents for plastic Pancake optics design, system use, and manufacturing workflows. It may file for further patents in the near future.

Higher quality

The company has stated that Pancake optics are capable of offering higher quality magnified images compared to notable optics design alternatives out there. It also has a sleeker design and is comparatively better for field of views between 50 to 100 degrees. The new Pancake optics are equipped with aspherical lenses that are a step above the spherical lenses. They are useful for reducing the weight and thickness of devices whilst providing better image qualities at reduced costs.

Optical Setup

Pancake optics function by creating light reflections in a to and fro motion within the optical setup. Generally, plastic materials tend to create an expansive birefringence or double light refraction. However, Kopin has stated that its Pancake optics with an all-plastic construction does not produce any birefringence. This results in creating a Pancake optics setup that is more compact has improved image quality, weighs less and also comes at a lower cost.


The company has revealed information about P95, its first Pancake optics with an all-plastic design. It has been optimised for the Kopin 1.3″ 2.6K x 2.6K OLED microdisplay which offers a 2560×2560 resolution and a field of view of 95°. The new optics have a weight of just 15g for each lens set and a thickness of 16mm. As a result, they are lighter and thinner than most optics of virtual reality headsets available today. According to the company, the optics, when paired with its bright OLED microdisplay can create an image that is similar to a 250-inch diagonal image observed from a distance of 10 feet. It is set to provide impressive performances for virtual reality applications.

New development

Dr. John C.C. Fan, the founder and CEO of Kopin Corporation, spoke about the new development. He said that the technological breakthrough it has achieved is a notable feat for the domain of virtual reality. According to Fan, the company is set to reduce the challenges associated with raising customer adoption rates due to factors like heavy headset weights. He elaborated that after studying the options available out there, the company is confident about Pancake optics be a suitable option for virtual reality applications that demand larger FOVs, smaller sizes and enhanced performances.

Also for MX and AR

Kopin Corporation also considers that the two Pancake optics can also be used for mixed reality and augmented reality applications. It will also encourage users to try on headsets that are generally lighter and perform better. The company plans to provide its new optics to users as an OLED module or a standalone product.



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