Did you know that eyeglass lenses can be treated with over 10 layers of coatings to get clearer, stronger and offer more protection to the eye?
Today’s eyeglass lenses are almost all made from plastic resins. These organic materials are lightweight and relatively impact resistant. They’re much safer than the previously used mineral glass, which was heavy and breakable.
Plastic resins used for eyeglass lenses differ from ordinary plastic materials because of their optical and mechanical properties. They have a high purity and have the capacity to be polished with accuracy, resulting in greater transparency. They also include fine chemical components that yield high refraction indexes. This results in thinner lenses with protective properties such as UV cut.
However, plastic is much easier to scratch than glass. And just like glass, it generates reflections that can hinder how well you see, and how well people can see you. This is why lenses must be treated in order to resist scratches, dust, smudges and reflections, while also better protecting your eyes.
When treating our lenses, we apply numerous coatings on the surface of the lens. To maximise its performance, a lens can be treated with up to 15 layers on each side.
We use advanced technologies for these treatments, both for the materials within the layers and for the process of depositing them. The highest performing lenses use nano-technology materials pioneered by Nikon that combine properties such as hardness and flexibility.
The base of the lens treatment is the varnishing hard coat layer. It protects your lenses from scratches. Then, multiple layers are applied on top of the varnish to reduce reflections, repel dust, and also cut specific light rays in order to provide additional comfort or better protection for your eyes. Finally, a top layer is applied to make your lens water- and grease-repellent, ensuring your eyeglass lenses stay clean.
New innovations in coatings keep improving the performance of your lenses and adding new functionalities. For instance, Nikon was the first to launch a lens treatment in 2011 that cut blue light, providing enhanced contrast and comfort for frequent screen users.