Fraunhofer spin-off raises $20m to market MEMS smart glasses tech

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OQmented, a spin-out from Fraunhofer that develops MEMS mirrors for display and 3D sensing solutions, has raised a further $9.3 million in seed round funding, bringing its total raised to $20 million since its inception in 2018.

The funds will fast-track market penetration of OQmented’s MEMS mirror-based laser beam scanning (LBS) technology for AR/VR smart glasses.

OQmented's chip-based projection display gives product developers the enabling technology for low-weight, high-performance smart glasses. The company says the product will help propel AR/VR technologies into the mainstream, and enable applications like 3D cameras, lidar, and machine vision products.

In March, OQmented announced a partnership with global semiconductor firm STMicroelectronics to jointly develop, manufacture, and market advanced MEMS mirror-based laser-beam scanning solutions. The agreement focuses on increasing development and capacity for ultra-compact, low-power laser-beam scanners to expand the market.

The funds raised in OQmented's recent seed round will also be invested in the expansion of the company’s location in Itzehoe, Germany, accelerating research & development as well as fostering existing partnerships and establishing cooperations with new partners. 

Helmut Jeggle, founder and managing partner of Salvia, one of OQmented's investors, said: 'OQmented is at the forefront of this trend with its game-changing projection display technology,' he said. 'Our investment decision was sparked by the team’s sharp market instincts and reinforced by the value that their innovation will create for myriad industries.'

Benedikt von Schoeler, general partner of Vsquaredanother investor, added: 'The team has been remarkably resource-efficient, innovating aggressively while scaling a company to support Big Tech customers. With a differentiated solution ready for adoption, as well as a manufacturing partnership with a MEMS leader, it is an exciting time to engage.'

A metaform is a new optical component that can combine with freeform optics to enable compact AR/VR headsets and eyewear. (Image: University of Rochester illustration/Michael Osadciw)

 

01 June 2021