NTS Optel usecase - optics experience center

A real eye catcher! It’s all about vision. Ensure eye surgeons have optimal light to perform eye surgeries.

Application | Surgical Instrument for eye surgery.
Market segment | Analytical and Life Sciences, Medical Devices, Surgical Instruments.  
Business activities | Concept design, prototyping, development, series production.


The eye is a very delicate organ of the human body. It allows us to see the beautiful things that are surrounding us every day. Therefore you want to make sure that once a treatment or surgery is required due to eye problems, the procedure is carried out with precision and maximum care.  The eye surgeon performing a surgery on the retina of an eye needs sufficient light to perform the surgery correctly. The light system for this purpose is called an endoilluminator.  It comprises a powerful light source connecting to a disposable optical fiber, which delivers the light through a thin, needle shaped tip into the eye of the patient.



Application context

One challenge for this application is to keep the fiber and its needle diameter as small as possible to minimize the damage to the eye, while still delivering maximum light intensity. This requires adapting and matching the light beam of the endoilluminator to the diameter and light acceptance angle of the fiber. Similar to the first model, the BrightStar, most endoilluminators are based on Xenon arc lamps. Making us of effective cooling and smart reuse of light that falls outside of the acceptance angle of the fiber, we have been able to develop a LED-based endoilluminator (the LedStar). The light output matches the output level of the Xenon endoilluminator with the advantages of being more reliable, having long term operation higher efficiency and improved eye-safety.


Business benefits

NTS Optel is fully responsible for the production of the LedStar. As this is a strong business partnership with the customer, NTS Optel also takes an active role in investigating new opportunities for further product development; for example adding new features due to new technology that is available. Our teams curiosity, creativity and craftsmanship will be put to the test as the team is currently investigating the next-gen endoilluminator based on R, G and B lasers enabling generating comparable light levels with fibers 0.25mm and even smaller in diameter, minimizing accompanying damage to the eye. Such a source would also enable the surgeon to control the light color and optimize visual contrast. Technical challenges are thermal loading of the plastic fiber due to the high power density, which could lead to a melt-down and the suppression of laser speckle.



Used techniques

Deliver 50-60 lumen through a 0.50-0.75mm core plastic fiber into the eye ball. White level controllable from cool white to yellow. In the latter case, significantly reducing photochemical hazard to the retina and increasing allowable time for the operation. Other features: Built-in custom barcode readers to recognize DORC (Dutch Ophthalmic Research Center) disposable fiber probes and controllable through a CAN interface




Book your challenger session now with Frank Ernst, Business Developer Optical Systems

"Take advantage of our experience and creativity to sharpen your initial idea or solution concept. I am keen to learn more about the challenges you’re having.  I am happy to help."

MAIL FRANK via our contact form