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Scientists have designed ultra-thin contact lenses that have the ability to shoot lasers from your eyes like Superman.

The lenses contain stick-on membranes which are 200 nanometres thick and can beam lasers on to a screen 20in (50cm) away.

But don’t get too excited. You’re not going to be able to pop down to the opticians and buy some laser firing eyes just yet. The scientists, from the University of St Andrews, say their work could be used to check for counterfeit banknotes or function as wearable security tags.

Laser eyes.
The contact lens contains a stick-on membrane that can shoot lasers (University of St Andrews/PA)

They add that these membrane lasers are safe to be used in the human eye and have “exceptional mechanical flexibility”.

Malte Gather, a professor at the university’s School of Physics and Astronomy, said: “Our work represents a new milestone in laser development and, in particular, points the way to how lasers can be used in inherently soft and ductile environments, be it in wearable sensors or as an authentication feature on banknotes.”

contatc lenses laser membrane on a bank note.
The researchers also used the membranes on banknotes (University of St Andrews/PA)

The researchers performed demonstrations using a cow eye, where the lens emitted a green laser beam when excited with a pulsing blue light.

They were also able to stick these ultra-thin, laser-emitting membranes on to banknotes and found that they still worked after several months.

Which is all well and good but who wouldn’t want laser firing contact lenses so they could zapp someone with just a look? Only a matter of time surely.


* Prices correct at time of posting.

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Token old guy in the office and lifelong Hull City fan with all the psychological issues that brings. To relax I enjoy walking my two Labradors, as well as running and cycling.


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