Metalenz Launches its Groundbreaking Metasurface Optics to Market


Metalenz, a maker of flat “meta-optic” lenses for 3D imaging, has launched its metasurface optics technology on the open market in partnership with semiconductor foundry United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC).

Metalenz says the new partnership will help bring Metalenz’s metasurface optics to the open market for the first time. Founded in 2016, Metalenz unveiled its vision for the future of smartphone lenses back in 2021 and received a $30 million investment last year.


“After initially designing meta-optics in partnership with one of the leading suppliers of 3D sensing solutions, we are now engaged with OEMs directly to bring the benefits of metasurface optics to their 3D sensing applications. By partnering with a world-class foundry like UMC, we gain the manufacturing capabilities, expertise, and global reach to serve customers interested in adopting our meta-optics technology,” says Rob Devlin, Co-founder and CEO of Metalenz. “This will further accelerate our growth as we are becoming the leading provider of precision optics for 3D sensing solutions.”


“Our state-of-the-art 12-inch facilities and decades of experience in semiconductor manufacturing has made us the foundry partner of choice for some of the most advanced fabless semiconductor companies in the world. Our expertise and scale will enable Metalenz to effortlessly scale up production to meet the growing demand for its meta-optics products,” explains Raj Verma, Associate Vice President of Technology Development at UMC. “In the more-than-Moore era, UMC is focused on strengthening our specialty technology leadership to enable a wide range of 5G, IoT, and automotive applications. This collaboration will enable UMC to expand our offering into meta-optics and play a pioneering role in delivering this disruptive imaging technology to market.”


Metalenz believes that its partnership with UMC will “yield significant benefits” for both companies and consumers. Metalenz’s meta-optic technology can enable the design and production of smaller and lighter optical systems.

Thanks to UMC’s manufacturing capabilities, Metalenz will be able to accelerate the development of its meta-optics products and bring them to market more quickly as a direct supplier to interested OEMs.

“Combine the function of up to five optical elements into one meta-optic with Metalenz technology,” explains Metalenz.

The first designs to go through the new supply chain will be produced for the Chinese OEM, DiluSense.

“As one of the most innovative suppliers of 3D sensing systems for IoT devices and consumer electronics we have been looking for better optics for years. We are excited to work with Metalenz, as their metasurface technology enables new optical form factors and performance that will further differentiate some of our most advanced 3D sensing AI solutions,” says Hu Lei, DiluSense Founder and CEO.

Metalenz holds more than 20 patents for its innovations in optical designs. The company’s metasurface technology aims to make it possible to produce lenses in a single layer within semiconductor foundries, allowing lenses to be printed like computer chips.

Image credits: Metalenz