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Lumos: Smart Light Therapy Glasses
Group members: Dongsoo Lee, Jagbir Dhillon, Saad Haq, and Lucas Tang,
School: University of Waterloo (Team B)
Light therapy is a clinically validated method of treating seasonal depression and sleep disorders, and recently been shown to treat non seasonal depression. The blue wavelengths of light have shown to be the most impactful for photobiological effect. Traditional forms of light therapy involving lamps and visors often had trouble being used conveniently on the go, limiting usage time to 30 minutes to 1 hour. In addition, many people find it difficult to adhere to therapy long term. Despite high clinical efficacy, light therapy, as it currently stands, has a low real world effectiveness.
Team Lumos set out to tackle this problem by designing light therapy into a more usable form factor to improve real world effectiveness, the Lumos Glasses. The glasses emit blue light from the side legs similar to AR glasses, and reflect the light into the eyes using a custom engineered nano coated lens. The nanocoat reflects only blue light, allowing other wavelengths to pass through. The result is a beautiful pair of smart glasses that looks like a regular pair of glasses, that doesn’t hinder regular vision, while providing light therapy.
Funded by a number of accelerators and grants, team Lumos created 12 functional prototypes and began a pilot study of 9 people. The study showed adherence improvement of 20% compared to traditional lamps, and an effectiveness of 13.3 point improvement on the Montgomery Asberg Depression Rating Scale.
The team then upgraded the design to improve usability, adding in ambient light
sensors, skin contact sensors and a bluetooth low energy chip to connect with a custom
made smartphone app. 200 of these commercial grade units are currently being
manufactured in a production validation testing build.