Magic Leap Patent | Fixed-Distance Virtual And Augmented Reality Systems And Methods

Patent: Fixed-Distance Virtual And Augmented Reality Systems And Methods

Publication Number: 20200201052

Publication Date: 20200625

Applicants: Magic Leap

Abstract

A fixed-distance display system includes a light source configured to generate a light beam. The system also includes a light guiding optical element configured to propagate at least a portion of the light beam by total internal reflection. The system further includes a first inertial measurement unit configured to measure a first value for calculating a head pose of a user. Moreover, the system includes a camera configured to capture an image for machine vision optical flow analysis. The display system is configured to display virtual images only within a tolerance range of a single predetermined optical plane.

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION(S)

[0001] This application is a continuation of U.S. application Ser. No. 15/665,335, filed on Jul. 31, 2017 entitled “FIXED-DISTANCE VIRTUAL AND AUGMENTED REALITY SYSTEMS AND METHODS”, which claims priority to U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 62/370,117, filed on Aug. 2, 2016 under attorney docket number ML.30040.00 and entitled “FIXED-DISTANCE VIRTUAL AND AUGMENTED REALITY SYSTEMS AND METHODS.” This application is related to co-owned U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 62/301,502 filed on Feb. 29, 2016 entitled “VIRTUAL AND AUGMENTED REALISTY SYSTEMS AND METHODS,” under attorney docket number ML.30059.00, and co-owned U.S. patent application publication Ser. No. 15/146,296 filed on May 4, 2016 entitled “SEPARATED PUPIL OPTICAL SYSTEMS FOR VIRTUAL AND AUGMENTED REALITY AND METHODS FOR DISPLAYING IMAGES USING SAME,” under attorney docket number ML.20058.00. The contents of the aforementioned patent applications are hereby expressly and fully incorporated by reference in their entirety, as though set forth in full.

BACKGROUND

[0002] Modern computing and display technologies have facilitated the development of virtual reality (“VR”), augmented reality (“AR”), and mixed reality (“MR”) systems, wherein digitally reproduced images or portions thereof are presented to a user in a manner wherein they seem to be, or may be perceived as, real. A virtual reality, or “VR”, scenario typically involves presentation of digital or virtual image information without transparency to other actual real-world visual input; an augmented reality, or “AR”, scenario typically involves presentation of digital or virtual image information as an augmentation to visualization of the actual world around the user. A mixed reality, or “MR”, system also introduces simulated objects into a real-world environment, but these objects typically feature a greater degree of interactivity than in AR systems. The simulated elements can often times be interactive in real time. Accordingly, AR and MR scenarios involve presentation of digital or virtual image information with at least partial transparency to other actual real-world visual input. The human visual perception system is very complex, and producing an VR/AR/MR technology that facilitates a comfortable, natural-feeling, rich presentation of virtual image elements amongst other virtual or real-world imagery elements is challenging.

[0003] The visualization center of the brain gains valuable perception information from the motion of both eyes and components thereof relative to each other. Vergence movements (i.e., rolling movements of the pupils toward or away from each other to converge the lines of sight of the eyes to fixate upon an object at various distances) of the two eyes relative to each other are closely associated with focusing (or “accommodation”) of the lenses of the eyes. Under normal conditions, changing the focus of the lenses of the eyes, or accommodating the eyes, to focus upon an object at a different distance will automatically cause a matching change in vergence to the same distance, under a relationship known as the “accommodation-vergence reflex.” Likewise, a change in vergence will trigger a matching change in accommodation, under normal conditions. Working against this reflex, as do most conventional stereoscopic VR/AR/MR configurations, is known to produce eye fatigue, headaches, or other forms of discomfort in users.

[0004] Stereoscopic wearable glasses generally feature two displays for the left and right eyes that are configured to display images with slightly different element presentation such that a three-dimensional perspective is perceived by the human visual system. Such configurations have been found to be uncomfortable for many users due to a mismatch between vergence and accommodation (“vergence-accommodation conflict”) which must be overcome to perceive the images in three dimensions. Indeed, some users are not able to tolerate stereoscopic configurations. These limitations apply to VR/AR/MR systems. Accordingly, most conventional VR/AR/MR systems are not optimally suited for presenting a rich, binocular, three-dimensional experience in a manner that will be comfortable and maximally useful to the user, in part because prior systems fail to address some of the fundamental aspects of the human perception system, including the vergence-accommodation conflict.

[0005] Full VR/AR/MR systems must also be capable of displaying virtual digital content at various perceived positions and distances relative to the user. The design of VR/AR/MR systems also presents numerous other challenges, including the speed of the system in delivering virtual digital content, quality of virtual digital content, eye relief of the user (addressing the vergence-accommodation conflict), size and portability of the system, and other system and optical challenges.

[0006] One possible approach to address these problems (including the vergence-accommodation conflict) is to project images at multiple depth planes. To implement this type of system, one approach is to use a large number of optical elements (e.g., light sources, prisms, gratings, filters, scan-optics, beam-splitters, mirrors, half-mirrors, shutters, eye pieces, etc.) to project images at a sufficiently large number (e.g., six) of depth planes. The problem with this approach is that using a large number of components in this manner necessarily requires a larger form factor than is desirable, and limits the degree to which the system size can be reduced. The large number of optical elements in these systems also results in a longer optical path, over which the light and the information contained therein can be degraded. These design issues result in cumbersome systems which are also power intensive. The systems and methods described herein are configured to address these challenges by presenting a fixed-distance mixed reality optical system.

SUMMARY

[0007] In one embodiment, a fixed-distance display system includes a light source configured to generate a light beam. The system also includes a light guiding optical element configured to propagate at least a portion of the light beam by total internal reflection. The system further includes a first inertial measurement unit configured to measure a first value for calculating a head pose of a user. Moreover, the system includes a camera configured to capture an image for machine vision optical flow analysis. The display system is configured to display virtual images only within a tolerance range of a single predetermined optical plane.

[0008] In one or more embodiments, the first inertial measurement unit is disposed adjacent the user’s head. The system may also include a second inertial measurement unit configured to measure a second value for calculating the head pose of the user. The second inertial measurement unit may be disposed adjacent the user’s head. The system may also include a third inertial measurement unit configured to measure a third value for calculating a body pose of the user. The third inertial measurement unit may be disposed adjacent the user’s waist. The first inertial measurement unit, the second inertial measurement unit, the third inertial measurement unit, and the camera may be configured to match a field of view of the fixed-distance display system to the user’s body position.

[0009] In one or more embodiments, the tolerance range is within 0.2 diopters to 0.6 diopters of the single predetermined optical plane. The display system may be configured to display three dimensional virtual images. The display system may be configured to display the three dimensional virtual images having dimensions that do not exceed 0.2 diopters to 0.6 diopters.

[0010] In another embodiment, a display method includes measuring a first value relating to a head pose. The method also includes calculating the head pose of a user based on the first value. The method further includes capturing an image. Moreover, the method includes performing machine vision optical flow analysis based on the image. In addition, the method includes generating a light beam. The method also includes propagating at least a portion of the light beam by total internal reflection. The method further includes displaying virtual images only within a tolerance range of a single predetermined optical plane.

[0011] In one or more embodiments, the method also includes measuring a second value relating to the head pose. The method may further include calculating the head pose of the user from the first value and the second value. Moreover, the method may include measuring a third value relating to a body pose. In addition, the method may include calculating the body pose of the user from the third value. The method may also include analyzing the first value, the second value, the third value, and the image to match a field of view of the user to the user’s body position.

[0012] In one or more embodiments, the tolerance range is within 0.2 diopters to 0.6 diopters of the single predetermined optical plane. The method may also include displaying three dimensional virtual images. The displayed three dimensional virtual images may have dimensions that do not exceed 0.2 diopters to 0.6 diopters.

[0013] In still another embodiment, a computer program product embodied in a non-transitory computer readable medium, the computer readable medium having stored thereon a sequence of instructions which, when executed by a processor causes the processor to execute a method for displaying, the method includes generating a light beam. The method also includes propagating at least a portion of the light beam by total internal reflection. The method further includes measuring a first value relating to a head pose. Moreover, the method includes calculating the head pose of a user based on the first value. In addition, the method includes capturing an image. The method also includes performing machine vision optical flow analysis based on the image. The method further includes displaying virtual images only within a tolerance range of a single predetermined optical plane.

[0014] In yet another embodiment, a body-centric display method includes measuring a first value relating to a head pose. The method also includes calculating the head pose of a user based on the first value. The method further includes measuring a second value relating to a body pose. Moreover, the method includes calculating the body pose of the user from the second value. In addition, the method includes generating a virtual image configured to be displayed only within a tolerance range of a single predetermined optical plane based on the head pose and the body pose. The method also includes displaying the virtual image only within the tolerance range of the single predetermined optical plane.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0015] The drawings illustrate the design and utility of various embodiments of the present invention. It should be noted that the figures are not drawn to scale and that elements of similar structures or functions are represented by like reference numerals throughout the figures. In order to better appreciate how to obtain the above-recited and other advantages and objects of various embodiments of the invention, a more detailed description of the present inventions briefly described above will be rendered by reference to specific embodiments thereof, which are illustrated in the accompanying drawings. Understanding that these drawings depict only typical embodiments of the invention and are not therefore to be considered limiting of its scope, the invention will be described and explained with additional specificity and detail through the use of the accompanying drawings in which:

[0016] FIG. 1 is a diagram depicting the focal planes of a multiple-plane focus full optical system;

[0017] FIG. 2 is a diagram depicting the focal plane of a single-plane focus fixed-distance optical system according to one embodiment;

[0018] FIGS. 3 and 4 are schematic views of respective fields-of-view of a user of single-plane focus fixed-distance optical systems according to two embodiments;

[0019] FIG. 5 is a detailed schematic view of an optical system according to one embodiment;

[0020] FIG. 6 is a detailed schematic view of a light-guiding optical element of an optical system according to one embodiment;

[0021] FIG. 7 is a detailed perspective view of a light-guiding optical element of an optical system according to one embodiment;

[0022] FIGS. 8A to 8D and 9A to 9D are schematic views of augmented reality/user identification systems according to various embodiments;

[0023] FIG. 10 is a detailed schematic view of a multiple-plane focus full augmented reality system;

[0024] FIGS. 11 and 12 are detailed schematic views of single-plane focus fixed-distance augmented reality systems according to two embodiments;

[0025] FIG. 13 illustrates a field-of-view of a user of a single-plane focus fixed-distance augmented reality system according to one embodiment;

[0026] FIG. 14 illustrates the field-of-view of the user of the single-plane focus fixed-distance augmented reality system according to the embodiment depicted in FIG. 13 after the user’s head has rotated relative to the user’s body;

[0027] FIGS. 15 and 16 are flow charts depicting methods for displaying a virtual object in a body-centric manner to a user of a single-plane focus fixed-distance augmented reality system according to two embodiments.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0028] Various embodiments of the invention are directed to systems, methods, and articles of manufacture for implementing fixed-distance mixed reality optical systems in a single embodiment or in multiple embodiments. Other objects, features, and advantages of the invention are described in the detailed description, figures, and claims.

[0029] Various embodiments will now be described in detail with reference to the drawings, which are provided as illustrative examples of the invention so as to enable those skilled in the art to practice the invention. Notably, the figures and the examples below are not meant to limit the scope of the present invention. Where certain elements of the present invention may be partially or fully implemented using known components (or methods or processes), only those portions of such known components (or methods or processes) that are necessary for an understanding of the present invention will be described, and the detailed descriptions of other portions of such known components (or methods or processes) will be omitted so as not to obscure the invention. Further, various embodiments encompass present and future known equivalents to the components referred to herein by way of illustration.

[0030] The optical systems may be implemented independently of AR/MR systems, but many embodiments below are described in relation to AR/MR systems for illustrative purposes only.

Summary of Problem and Solution

[0031] One type of optical system for generating virtual images at various depths includes numerous optical components (e.g., light sources, prisms, gratings, filters, scan-optics, beam-splitters, mirrors, half-mirrors, shutters, eye pieces, etc.) that increase in number, thereby increasing the complexity, size and cost of VR/AR/MR systems, as the quality of the 3-D experience/scenario (e.g., the number of imaging planes) and the quality of images (e.g., the number of image colors) increases. The increasing size of optical systems with increasing 3-D scenario/image quality imposes a limit on the minimum size of VR/AR/MR systems resulting in cumbersome systems with reduced optical efficiency.

[0032] The following disclosure describes various embodiments of systems and methods for creating 3-D perception around a single predetermined distance using a single-plane focus optical element for each eye that address the problem, by providing optical systems with fewer components and increased efficiency. In particular, the systems described herein utilize a minimal set of optical system components to provide an optical system for displaying virtual objects at a predetermined distance from a user for mixed reality scenarios. This optical system design simplifies and reduces the size of VR/AR/MR systems by limiting the function of such systems to displaying virtual objects at a predetermined distance.

Full Augmented Reality Systems

[0033] Before describing the details of embodiments of fixed-distance mixed reality optical systems, this disclosure will now provide a brief description of related full AR/MR systems, which are configured to present a full AR scenario with virtual objects appearing at a plurality of positions along a user’s optical axis (e.g., from infinity to adjacent the user). Mixed reality optical systems (full and/or fixed-distance) may be implemented independently of AR/MR systems, but many systems below are described in relation to AR/MR systems for illustrative purposes only. Various augmented reality display systems have been discussed in co-owned U.S. utility patent application Ser. No. 14/555,585 filed on Nov. 27, 2014 under attorney docket number ML-30011-US and entitled “VIRTUAL AND AUGMENTED REALITY SYSTEMS AND METHODS,” the contents of which are hereby expressly and fully incorporated herein by reference as though set forth in full.

[0034] One possible approach to implementing a full AR/MR system uses, for each eye of a user, a plurality of volume phase holograms, surface-relief holograms, or light-guiding optical elements (“LOE”) that are embedded with depth plane information to generate images that appear to originate from respective depth planes. In other words, a diffraction pattern, or diffractive optical element (“DOE”) may be embedded within or imprinted upon an LOE such that as collimated light (light beams with substantially planar wavefronts) is substantially totally internally reflected along the LOE, it intersects the diffraction pattern at multiple locations and at least partially exits toward the user’s eye. The DOEs are configured so that light exiting therethrough from an LOE are verged so that they appear to originate from a particular depth plane. The collimated light may be generated using an optical condensing lens (a “condenser”).

[0035] For example, a first LOE may be configured to deliver collimated light to the eye that appears to originate from the optical infinity depth plane (0 diopters). Another LOE may be configured to deliver collimated light that appears to originate from a distance of 2 meters (1/2 diopter). Yet another LOE may be configured to deliver collimated light that appears to originate from a distance of 1 meter (1 diopter). By using a stacked LOE assembly, it can be appreciated that multiple depth planes may be created, with each LOE configured to display images that appear to originate from a particular depth plane. It should be appreciated that the stack may include any number of LOEs. However, at least N stacked LOEs are required to generate N depth planes. Further, N, 2N or 3N stacked LOEs may be used to generate RGB colored images at N depth planes.

[0036] In order to present virtual content in a full 3-D AR scenario to a user, the full AR/MR system projects images of the virtual content into the user’s eye so that they appear to originate from various depth planes in the Z direction (i.e., orthogonally away from the user’s eye). In other words, the virtual content may not only change in the X and Y directions (i.e., in a 8D plane orthogonal to a central visual axis of the user’s eye), but it may also appear to change in the Z direction such that the user may perceive an object to be very close or at an infinite distance or any distance in between. In full AR/MR systems, the user may perceive multiple objects simultaneously at different depth planes. For example, the user may see a virtual dragon appear from infinity and run towards the user. Alternatively, the user may simultaneously see a virtual bird at a distance of 3 meters away from the user and a virtual coffee cup at arm’s length (about 1 meter) from the user.

[0037] Multiple-plane focus full AR/MR systems create a perception of variable depth by projecting images on some or all of a plurality of depth planes located at respective fixed distances in the Z direction from the user’s eye. Referring now to FIG. 1, it should be appreciated that multiple-plane focus full AR/MR systems typically display frames at fixed depth planes 202 (e.g., the six depth planes 202 shown in FIG. 1). One exemplary multiple-plane focus full AR/MR system has six fixed depth planes 202 in the Z direction. In generating virtual content at one or more of the six depth planes 202, 3-D perception is created such that the user perceives one or more virtual objects at varying distances from the user’s eye. Given that the human eye is more sensitive to objects that are closer in distance than objects that appear to be far away, more depth planes 202 are generated closer to the eye, as shown in FIG. 1. In other systems, the depth planes 202 may be placed at equal distances away from each other.

[0038] Depth plane positions 202 are typically measured in diopters, which is a unit of optical power equal to the inverse of the focal length measured in meters. For example, in one system, depth plane 1 may be 1/3 diopters away, depth plane 2 may be 0.3 diopters away, depth plane 3 may be 0.2 diopters away, depth plane 4 may be 0.15 diopters away, depth plane 5 may be 0.1 diopters away, and depth plane 6 may represent infinity (i.e., 0 diopters away). It should be appreciated that other systems may generate depth planes 202 at other distances/diopters. Thus, in generating virtual content at strategically placed depth planes 202, the user is able to perceive virtual objects in three dimensions. For example, the user may perceive a first virtual object as being close to him when displayed in depth plane 1, while another virtual object appears at infinity at depth plane 6. Alternatively, the virtual object may first be displayed at depth plane 6, then depth plane 5, and so on until the virtual object appears very close to the user. It should be appreciated that the above examples are significantly simplified for illustrative purposes. In another system, all six depth planes may be concentrated on a particular focal distance away from the user. For example, if the virtual content to be displayed is a coffee cup half a meter away from the user, all six depth planes could be generated at various cross-sections of the coffee cup, giving the user a highly granulated 3-D view of the coffee cup.

[0039] In one system, the full AR/MR system may work as a multiple-plane focus system. In other words, all six LOEs may be illuminated simultaneously, such that images appearing to originate from six fixed depth planes are generated in rapid succession with the light sources rapidly conveying image information to LOE 1, then LOE 2, then LOE 3 and so on. For example, a portion of the desired image, comprising an image of the sky at optical infinity may be injected at time 1 and the LOE 1090 retaining collimation of light (e.g., depth plane 6 from FIG. 1) may be utilized. Then an image of a closer tree branch may be injected at time 2 and an LOE 1090 configured to create an image appearing to originate from a depth plane 10 meters away (e.g., depth plane 5 from FIG. 1) may be utilized; then an image of a pen may be injected at time 3 and an LOE 1090 configured to create an image appearing to originate from a depth plane 1 meter away may be utilized. This type of paradigm can be repeated in rapid time sequential (e.g., at 360 Hz) fashion such that the user’s eye and brain (e.g., visual cortex) perceives the input to be all part of the same image.

[0040] Full AR/MR systems are required to project images (i.e., by diverging or converging light beams) that appear to originate from various locations along the Z axis (i.e., depth planes) to generate images for a full 3-D experience. As used in this application, “light beams” include, but are not limited to, directional projections of light energy (including visible and invisible light energy) radiating from a light source. Generating images that appear to originate from various depth planes conforms or synchronizes the vergence and accommodation of the user’s eye for that image, and minimizes or eliminates vergence-accommodation conflict.

[0041] The full AR scenario functional requirement to project images that appear to originate from various depth planes imposes minimum complexity, size and cost limitations on full AR/MR systems. The fixed-distance AR/MR systems described herein avoid these limitations by reducing the function of the system.

Fixed-Distance Augmented Reality Systems

[0042] Fixed-distance AR/MR systems are configured to display virtual objects near/adjacent (i.e., within about 0.2 diopters to about 0.6 diopters from) a single predetermined distance in the Z direction away from the user (i.e., “depth plane”) for a partial AR experience/scenario. Referring now to FIG. 2, it should be appreciated that single-plane focus fixed-distance AR/MR systems typically display frames at one fixed depth plane 202. The visual effect for a user of a fixed-distance AR/MR system is that the user is presented with a virtual dome of displayed images in front of and centered on the user. The dome 206 is represented as 2-D arc in FIG. 3, where the virtual dome 206 of displayed images is in front of the user. While a user may have a stationary left to right field of view (“FOV”) 208 of about 50.degree., effective L/R FOV will be about 180.degree. due to head rotation, as shown in FIG. 3 in a “body-centric” system (described below). In addition, the user’s FOV can cover the entire dome 206 with up and down head movement. Accordingly, a fixed-distance AR/MR system can present image information to a user over the entire dome 206 surrounding the user 204. In another embodiment with a stationary user having freedom of body and head rotation, the effective FOV can be an entire sphere 209, as shown in FIG. 4. While FIGS. 3 and 4 represents the dome 206 and sphere 209 of images presented by a fixed-distance AR/MR system in 2-D, it should be understood that the dome 206 and sphere 209 are three dimensional surfaces.

[0043] Fixed-distance AR/MR systems can be implemented with, for each eye, a single volume phase hologram, surface-relief hologram, or light-guiding optical element (“LOE”) embedded with depth plane information to generate images that appear to originate within a tolerance range of (e.g., within about 0.2 diopters to about 0.6 diopters from) the predetermined depth plane. Fixed-distance AR/MR systems can generate a 3-D effect by using stereoscopic technique (i.e., displaying respective images for each eye at slightly different distances in the Z direction within a tolerance range of the predetermined distance).

[0044] While the human visual system is very accurate with respect to vergence, it has some tolerance for differences in accommodation (i.e., focus) before vergence-accommodation reflex related problems arise. Though specific to a particular user, tolerance/uncertainty in accommodation typically occurs between about 0.2 diopters to about 0.6 diopters relative to vergence. Accordingly, the fixed-distance AR/MR systems disclosed herein take advantage of the human visual system’s tolerance for differences in accommodation to display 3-D objects near a single predetermined distance in the Z direction, in particular at ranges beyond a user’s arm length.

[0045] Because a diopter is the inverse of distance from a user’s eye (see FIG. 1), the tolerance/uncertainty in accommodation, which is constant in diopters, varies in terms of linear distance. For illustrative purposes, at a first distance of 1.00 m (=1.0 diopter) from a user, adding 0.2 diopters (the lower range of typical tolerances) would result in a second distance of 0.83 m, a change of -17 cm. Similarly, 0.2 diopters in the opposite direction corresponds to a distance of 1.25 m, for a total range of 0.83 m to 1.25 m for content to be viewed within accommodation tolerances of 0.2 diopters if displayed at 1.00 m (in other words, a range of 42 cm for a fixed-distance AR/MR system to display content at 1.00 m within tolerance of 0.2 diopters).

[0046] On the other hand, for a first distance of 0.50 m (=2.0 diopters) from a user, adding 0.6 diopters would result in a second distance of 0.38 m, a change of -12 cm. Moving a corresponding 0.6 diopters away from the 0.50 m first distance results in a distance of 0.71 m, a change of 21 cm or a total range of 33 cm for a fixed AR/MR system to display content at 0.5 m within tolerances of 0.6 diopters. As compared to the 42 cm range of a 1.00 m fixed-distance AR/MR system with 0.2 diopter tolerance, tripling the tolerance to 0.6 (the other extreme of diopter tolerance) actually decreased the range of content projection for the nearer 0.5 m first distance system. Accordingly, a fixed distance system with more precise (i.e. lower)* accommodation tolerances will have greater functional ranges for displaying content at fixed distances further from a user*

[0047] A fixed-distance AR/MR system employing the tolerance ranges of the present invention around a single optical plane can greatly simplify functionality if content display/rendering is permitted only when such content would appear within certain ranges of a predetermined optical place from a user, preferably at larger distances to maximize tolerance ranges across different users. Similarly, in some embodiments, certain content may be configured to only appear within certain ranges if the optical power establishing the position of a predetermined optical plane of the fixed-distance AR/MR system is known, or a user’s particular preferred tolerance is determined.

[0048] Table 1 depicts ranges relative to a predetermined optical plane at a fixed-distance from a user that permit content display within diopter tolerances according to some embodiments. Table 1 illustrates the tight ranges that content may be displayed for near-to-user optical planes (see the 0.5 m predetermined optical plane distances), regardless of diopter tolerances, as opposed to the further optical planes that enable greater ranges of content display.

TABLE-US-00001 TABLE 1 In some embodiments, a tolerance range for a fixed-distance AR/MR system can set rendering domains, such that content that does not appear within a range will not render and thus will save battery life, or content can specifically be programmed to appear within certain distances from a user so as to remain within tolerances of the predetermined optical plane. Fixed-distance of 0.2 diopters tolerance 0.6 diopters tolerance predetermined optical near limit far limit near limit far limit plane from a user (from user) (from user) total range (from user) (from user) total range 0.5 m (2 diopters) 45 cm 56 cm 11 cm 38 cm 71 cm 33 cm 1.0 m (1 diopter) 83 cm 125 cm 42 cm 63 cm 250 cm 187 cm 1.67 m (3/5 diopter = 0.6) 125 cm 250 cm 125 cm 83 cm optical N/A infinity 2.0 m (1/2 diopter) 143 cm 333 cm 190 cm 91 cm optical N/A infinity 4.0 m (1/4 diopter) 222 cm 2000 cm 1778 cm 118 cm optical N/A infinity 5.0 m (1/5 diopter = 0.2) 308 cm optical N/A 125 cm optical N/A infinity infinity

[0049] In some embodiments, a user may elect a tolerance, either by a functionality (i.e. choosing a fixed-distance AR embodiment that practically would only need to render content within certain distances, for example a virtual computer screen), or by prescription (i.e. recognizing that the user experiences discomfort when exceeding certain diopter tolerances). Such election is akin to selecting customized and simplified AR devices for a particular setting, as opposed to a more complex AR/MR system intended to serve all use cases.

[0050] FIG. 5 depicts portions of a fixed-distance optical system 100 for projecting images at a single depth plane. The system 100 includes a light source 120 and an LOE 190 having a diffractive optical element (not shown) and an in-coupling grating 192 (“ICG”) associated therewith. The diffractive optical elements may be of any type, including volumetric or surface relief. In one embodiment, the ICG 192 can be a reflection-mode aluminized portion of the LOE 190. In another embodiment, the ICG 192 can be a transmissive diffractive portion of the LOE 190. When the system 100 is in use, a “virtual” light beam 210 from the light source 120 enters the LOE 190 via the ICG 192 and propagates along the LOE 190 by substantially total internal reflection (“TIR”) for display to an eye of a user. The light beam 210 is “virtual” because it encodes an image of a non-existent “virtual” object or a portion thereof as directed by the system 100. It is understood that although only one beam 210 is illustrated in FIG. 5, a multitude of beams, which encode an image, may enter the LOE 190 from a wide range of angles through the same ICG 192. The range of angles of entry is related to the FOV achievable for the system 100. A light beam “entering” or being “admitted” into an LOE includes, but is not limited to, the light beam interacting with the LOE so as to propagate along the LOE by substantially TIR. The system 100 depicted in FIG. 5 can include various light sources 120 (e.g., LEDs, OLEDs, lasers, and masked broad-area/broad-band emitters). In other embodiments, light from the light source 120 may also be delivered to the LOE 190 via fiber optic cables (not shown).

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