SIGGRAPH 2008 > For Attendees > New Tech Demos > Multi-Focal Compound Eye

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Multi-Focal Compound Eye: Liquid Lens Array for Computational Photography

Theme: SIGGRAPH Core
Hall H

A novel imaging system that captures multi-focal compound images for computational photography. The system consists of an array of 64 liquid lenses and a high-resolution video camera behind the array. Each lens is 7.75 milimeters in diameter and has no moving mechanical parts, but its focal length can be instantly changed by electric signals.

The lenses are arranged on a planer board in an 8 x 8 matrix whose size is 66 milimeters in width and height, with electric lines for independent focus control. The video camera passes images through the array at 2048 x 2048 pixels at 15 fps. Since the focus of each lens is independently controllable, the system is flexible, and it can capture light fields of various types of target scenes. This demonstration shows several examples of interactive visualization of captured light fields as a suggestion of the future of computational photography.

Enhanced Life
This camera system could push the envelope of conventional 2D cameras, because it captures light fields in several ways.

Goal
The goal of this project is a basic implementation of an adaptive lens array and novel imaging. For example, multi-focal imaging or a multi-focal synthetic aperture, or multi-perspective imaging.

Innovations
This is the first computational camera based on a liquid lens array. The focal length of each lens can be independently changed in real time.

Vision
This imaging method will be enhanced with higher focusing speed and smaller lenses. In addition, this special optics technique is applicable for multi-focal image projection and multi-focal integral photography.

Contributors
Kensuke Ueda
Dongha Lee
Takafumi Koike
Keita Takahashi
Takeshi Naemura
The University of Tokyo