Soon You Will Be Able To See Your Computer Screen In The Sunlight Thanks To Moth Eyes

Modern technology is a beautiful thing. Personal computers have become affordable to the point where just about anybody can acquire one. Even our cellular phones are not so much phones as much as they are pocket sized computers, which possess capabilities that would have been unimaginable a decade or two ago. However, there still exists at least one glaring imperfection inherent in all modern laptops and smartphones, and that imperfection is sun-induced screen darkening. I am sure you have all experienced those moments when the bright sunlight rendered your computer or smartphone screen so dark that you could not see the images displayed. At times like this, you likely rushed to the nearest shaded region in order to perceive the images on your computer screen. Luckily, researchers have found a solution to this problem, and, of course, the solution involves moths.

It can be difficult to see the images displayed on even the most up to date computer screens when these screens become darkened from the brightness of the sun. This sunlight-induced screen darkness is a strange phenomenon, but researchers have discovered nanostructures within the eyes of moths that can be duplicated mechanically in order to prevent computer screens from becoming dark from sun exposure. This anti-reflection technology will likely be used on future computers so that consumers will never again have to find shade in order to see what is being displayed on their monitors.

The new iPhone has a surface reflection of 4.4 percent, but the new moth-inspired screens will only have a surface reflection of .23 percent. This is a significant improvement over modern computer screens. Light from the sun is so bright that computer screens reflect the light, making the images on your computer screen unperceivable. It has long been known that the eyes of a moth are unique in that the sun is not significantly reflected off of their eyes. But researchers have long struggled to engineer materials that are similar to the nanostructures in moth eyes. The hope was to develop a thin film that would allow people to view their computer screens without the darkening that comes from sunlight reflection. Now, it looks like this technology will soon become a reality.

Although you may not be an insect expert, can you think of any mechanical devices that could be improved by applying engineered forms of insect physiology?