16/06/2021

Categories: Biomedical and Medical Engineering, Postgraduate

The Latest in Biomedical Engineering: Smart Contact Lenses

Biomedical engineering research has come on leaps and bounds, bringing intelligent solutions to the eye care industry, with smart contact lenses as the next big thing!

Becoming a biomedical engineer is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world, with excellent earning potential and brilliant job satisfaction. Imagine being able to engineer products or systems that could change lives and improve the health of all.

The University of Bolton’s MSc Biomedical Engineering programme is suitable for graduates in engineering or physics who are looking to move into biomedical fields. If you dream of creating life-altering designs, this postgraduate degree could be for you.

Here’s a look at one of the breakthrough developments, as an example of what you could be working on after you graduate…

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Make way for a new breed of contact lenses, designed to not only improve your vision, but to also improve understanding of your own eye health.

While embedded sensors for measuring intraocular pressure (IOP) have existed for a while, these lenses have been too rigid and bulky. To the point where they even block vision, meaning they have not been fit-for-purpose.

But the latest breakthrough means being able to have embedded, real-time IOP in soft, transparent and comfortable lenses that can be worn just like standard lenses.

Having been trialled on 10 volunteers, these have been deemed a huge success, and could even become a viable route to treating illnesses such as glaucoma.

By directly sending vital signs in the eye, the use of smart contact lenses could help eye care professionals enhance glaucoma treatment for patients.

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The future of eye care?

These new contact lens feature a wireless antenna, a strain sensor and capacitors, while deploying a stretchable metal that interconnects, with an integrated circuit for seamless wireless communication.

They are the first ever contact lenses that could be used in an intelligent, data-gathering way. But there are still challenges ahead in making them accessible to the wider public.

The main barriers to mass production include eye safety, which needs to be looked at in closer detail. The circuitry is rather complex and the necessary components such as sensors and antennas can obstruct vision if not properly placed. There’s also the concern that interconnecting structures could cause damage to the cornea, so rigorous testing is a must.

However, this latest advancement shows just how far technology has come, and also highlights the value of data in healthcare.

If you’re looking to study biomedical engineering research, 2021 is a great time to upskill. We are on the brink of Industry 4.0, so there’s never been a more exciting time build your career and make an impact.

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At the University of Bolton, we rank in the Top 10 Universities for Student Satisfaction for Medical Technology.*

We’ve also been a Top 6 UK university for Teaching Quality in The Times Good University Guide for the past three years**, making us a great place to advance your skills and your career in biomedical engineering or biomedical engineering research.

On our course, you’ll have access to state-of-the-art facilities to support your studies, including a 3D motion capture system, an Isokinetic dynamometer, a hi-tech biomedical sensors laboratory, a cell culturing and tissue engineering laboratory, manufacturing facilities such as CNC and laser cutters, and rapid prototyping technology such as 3D printers.

Find out more about applying in September 2021 by visiting the course page.

If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch on +44 (0)1204 903 394 or admissions@bolton.ac.uk.

 

 

* Complete University Guide 2021

*The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021, 2020 and 2019

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