The optics of the human eye at 8.6 µm resolution

Sci Rep. 2021 Dec 2;11(1):23334. doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-02653-w.


Ocular optics is normally estimated based on up to 2,600 measurement points within the pupil of the eye, which implies a lateral resolution of approximately 175 µm for a 9 mm pupil diameter. This is because information below this resolution is not thought to be relevant or even possible to obtain with current measurement systems. In this work, we characterize the in vivo ocular optics of the human eye with a lateral resolution of 8.6 µm, which implies roughly 1 million measurement points for a pupil diameter of 9 mm. The results suggest that the normal human eye presents a series of hitherto unknown optical patterns with amplitudes between 200 and 300 nm and is made up of a series of in-phase peaks and valleys. If the results are analysed at only high lateral frequencies, the human eye is also found to contain a whole range of new information. This discovery could have a great impact on the way we understand some fundamental mechanisms of human vision and could be of outstanding utility in certain fields of ophthalmology.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Optics and Photonics / methods*
  • Pupil / physiology*
  • Vision, Ocular / physiology*