Single vision, bifocal and progressive lenses

Single vision, bifocal and progressive lenses

3D printing is revolutionizing the eyewear industry because lenses are volume-printed and customized individually. Traditionally glasses wearers have prescription lenses fitted into a frame.

Prescription lenses are considered medical devices, with regulatory requirements. Different types of lenses include single vision lenses (one distance only), bifocals (distance + near), trifocals (distance + intermediate + near), and progressive addition lenses (lenses with multiple powers from distance to near).
Prescription lenses are almost impossible to stock. Eyewear vendors or tech players attempting to stock just the most common lens prescriptions may have to purchase more than 3 million stock-keeping units.

3D printing doesn’t require vendors or tech players to keep stock. Each lens is custom-made as and when the wearer requires. A 3D printed lens is perfectly optimized according to power and frame, allowing the lens to be as thin as possible and deliver the best optics for the wearer.

3D printed single vision lenses

Single vision lenses include a single optical prescription and distribute focus evenly over the entire area of the lens. The benefit of a 3D printed single vision lens is that it provides a possibility to incorporate special features into the lens, such as embedded technology. With 3D printing novel lens designs are then created, such as custom lens inserts for augmented or virtual reality goggles.

3D printed bifocal lenses

Bifocal lenses have two optical powers: distance and near. With 3D lenses it’s possible to place different optical powers in custom locations on the lens, enabling more flexibility with the lens design compared to legacy lens manufacturing. 3D bifocals customizes the addition (reading area of the lens) to optimize work functions, for example, to have the reading area at the top and bottom for pilots, and at the top of the lens for engineers. 3D printed bifocals also benefit aging people who require trifocals to see close-up and middle-distance work or distance viewing.

3D progressive lens

Progressive addition lenses, also called multi-focal lenses, include many powers from distance to near viewing but with no visible line. Wearers favor progressive addition lenses due to their line-free appearance, and ease of achieving clear vision using multiple distances in one pair of lenses.

Benefits custom 3D printed lens

  • Customized prescription lenses for the wearer
  • Enable prescription inserts for augmented and virtual reality
  • Enable flexibility in lens design
  • Enable customization of lenses to the wearers requirements