Cooper has been granted a patent for a tuneable ophthalmic lens. The lens has an activated state and a deactivated state, with a central chamber and a fluid reservoir. The lens can change its optical power by pumping fluid into or out of the central chamber using a voltage-activatable pump. The central chamber is biased towards the deactivated state, causing fluid to passively vacate the chamber and change the lens’s optical power. GlobalData’s report on Cooper gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s company profile on Cooper, was a key innovation area identified from patents. Cooper's grant share as of September 2023 was 53%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

Tuneable contact lens with fluid-filled central chamber

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: The Cooper Companies Inc

A recently granted patent (Publication Number: US11768387B2) describes a tuneable contact lens that can change its optical power. The lens consists of a first lens portion that is in contact with the eye and a second lens portion that forms part of the external curvature of the lens. These two portions are fused together to form a single piece. Between them, there is a central chamber enclosed by a portion of the first lens portion. The central chamber has a circumferential wall and an external surface that faces away from the eye.

The lens includes a fluid reservoir that is in fluid communication with the central chamber. A voltage-activatable pump is configured to pump fluid from the reservoir to the central chamber when an applied voltage is applied. The lens has an activated state, in which the pump receives voltage and pumps fluid into the central chamber, and a deactivated state, in which the pump does not receive voltage and the central chamber is substantially empty of fluid. The central chamber is biased towards the deactivated state, causing fluid to passively vacate the chamber and change the optical power of the lens.

The patent also mentions that the pump can be an osmotic pump, a mechanical pump, or an electro-mechanical actuator. It can have multiple settings, each corresponding to a predetermined volume of fluid in the central chamber. The volume of fluid in the central chamber can be continuously variable. In the deactivated state, the central chamber contains less than 3 percent of the total volume of fluid in the lens, while in the activated state, it contains between 10 percent and 95 percent of the total volume of fluid.

The lens can also include a wireless communication module that communicates wirelessly with a control module. Additionally, the pump can be arranged to pump fluid from the central chamber to the fluid reservoir. The central chamber has an elastic external surface, which biases it towards the deactivated state.

The patent also describes methods of tuning the lens and manufacturing the tuneable contact lens. The method of tuning involves pumping fluid from the reservoir to the central chamber by applying a voltage to the pump. The method of manufacturing includes forming the first and second lens portions, creating the central chamber and fluid reservoir, positioning the pump, and bonding the lens portions together.

A kit of parts is also mentioned, which includes the tuneable contact lens with a communication module and a control module for communication with the lens.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.