MEMS based handheld projection systems entered the consumer markets in 2009 and 2010. These low cost, compact
and handheld devices enable many and diverse possibilities for consumer and industrial applications. In this paper we
will discuss many of these applications and the performance requirements that will be needed to support them.
The combination of laser light sources and MEMS technology enables a range of display systems such as ultra small
projectors for mobile devices, head-up displays for vehicles, wearable near-eye displays and projection systems for 3D
imaging. Images are created by scanning red, green and blue lasers horizontally and vertically with a single
two-dimensional MEMS. Due to the excellent beam quality of laser beams, the optical designs are efficient and compact.
In addition, the laser illumination enables saturated display colors that are desirable for augmented reality applications
where a virtual image is used. With this technology, the smallest projector engine for high volume manufacturing to date
has been developed. This projector module has a height of 7 mm and a volume of 5 cc. The resolution of this projector is
WVGA. No additional projection optics is required, resulting in an infinite focus depth. Unlike with micro-display
projection displays, an increase in resolution will not lead to an increase in size or a decrease in efficiency. Therefore
future projectors can be developed that combine a higher resolution in an even smaller and thinner form factor with
increased efficiencies that will lead to lower power consumption.
A projector with a height of 7 mm has been developed. The projector uses a two dimensional MEMS, a red and blue
diode laser and a second harmonic green laser. This projector module is able to display images with a WVGA resolution
while consuming 1.5 W. Due to the collimated nature of laser beams, the display has a depth of focus that is virtually
unlimited. Future MEMS developments will lead to even thinner projection modules. Furthermore, this projection
technology enables additional display systems such as head-up displays for vehicles.