Edited by Andrew Karp

When International Vision Expo East opens for business at New York’s Jacob Javits Center this month, suppliers of ophthalmic lenses and lens processing equipment will display their hottest, most innovative products.

L&T readers get an exclusive preview of what’s new and noteworthy in Andrew Karp’s Expo Scouting Report.


Progressive addition lenses (PALs) keep getting more sophisticated, and several PAL suppliers are now offering advancements such as customization for position of wear, frame fit and face shape.

With the launch of two new customized products—GT2 progressive lenses and Zeiss 3DSV—Carl Zeiss Vision now offers a true 100 percent customized portfolio. The portfolio consists of a good-better-best progressive offering of Zeiss GT2 3D (good), Zeiss GT2 3DV (better) and the flagship Zeiss Individual (best.) In single vision, Zeiss offers a better-best combination of Zeiss 3DSV and Zeiss Individual SV. All are available in a full range of material and treatment options.

Zeiss will also introduce Zeiss Experience, a comprehensive program to help private eyecare practices grow through premium lens sales and practice marketing. Based on a global consumer survey, Zeiss Experience includes: Zeiss Analysis—An interactive approach to gathering information about patient needs, issues and lifestyle, and educating patients about their eyewear options using interactive media, including the Zeiss Cinemizer (pictured  below, left). Zeiss Practice Elements—A group of scaleable decor options that convey the message that the practice is focused on the patient’s eyes and vision; Zeiss Marketing Tools—A menu of options to market the practice both internally and in the local market.

Shamir is debuting Shamir Spectrum in both Progressive and Single Vision Freeform designs. Positioned as a mid-tier Freeform product, Shamir Spectrum will provide improved optical benefits over the Shamir Element; however will not be available with the in-depth “as-worn” personalization that Shamir’s Autograph II designs provide. With more stability in the far vision zone and up to 20 percent wider corridors, Shamir Spectrum’s soft design will be the ideal solution for patients requiring increased comfort in a Freeform design, without the enhanced personalization of the Autograph II design. Shamir Spectrum will be available in 14mm, 16mm and 18mm fitting heights.

Essilor will feature its new top-of-the-line Varilux Physio Enhanced lenses. Designed with W.A.V.E. Technology 2, this new lens provides the sharpest vision at every distance, even in the most challenging low light conditions, according to Essilor.
Essilor is also introducing Definity lenses with Dual Add 2.0 technology and design in Thin&Lite 1.74 material. The patented Dual Add technology allows minimum astigmatism within the lens surface as compared to other traditional and single surface digitally surfaced lenses. Wearers get a wider field-of-vision in all the three viewing zones and in addition, get the benefit of the Ground View Advantage—a fourth zone below the reading area.

Augen Optics will introduce Spacia High Definition Progressive Lenses with wide, spacious distance vision and an extra-wide intermediate, ensuring a smooth transition from distance to near. Spacia progressives are designed for active presbyopes who need expansive distance vision for outdoor activities such as golfing, tennis or fishing, as well as quick, easy access to near vision for close-up visual tasks. The “super-soft” design minimizes peripheral distortion and ensures easy adaptation. Initially available in Trivex material, Spacia is designed with front surface free-form processing and patented Augen High Definition Lens technology.

Optimus will preview its “high definition lenses,” which are packaged free with Briot Accura and Briot Alta edgers and also sold direct to ECPs. Optimus UltraClear&Lite lenses are aspheric, oleophobic, advanced scratch resistant AR and ultra thin, and available in polycarbonate and 1.67 index. Optimus Intuition FreeForm lenses require virtually no adaptation, according to Optimus. The corridor length is available down to 10mm for small frames and is very smooth. Adjustments are made in the wavefront design to account for pantascopic tilt and face form. The lenses are available as uncuts.

Several new sun lenses will also debut at Expo. Signet Armorlite is featuring two new technology choices available with Kodak Lenses: Kodak Sun Lenses with NXT Technology and Kodak Lenses with Anti-Fatigue Progressive Technology. Options for the new Kodak Sun Lenses range from photochromic-polarized to mirror in Kodak Unique progressive and single vision lenses. The patented Anti-Fatigue Progressive Technology, designed to reduce near-viewing eyestrain, can be added to any Kodak progressive.

KBco is releasing Xperio spherical polycarbonate FT28 in Grey-3, Brown-3 and Grey-Green. It is Crizal approved and comes standard with a factory applied “glass like” hard coating.

Younger Optics is launching NuPolar Trilogy—Visual Armor, a new Rx sun lens that provides “unparalleled protection and visual acuity by use of NuPolar polarization technology and Trilogy (Trivex) material properties,” according to Younger. This patented new development combines superior optics and impact resistance with protection from blinding glare and UV in a thin, lightweight lens. The lens comes in True Gray and True Brown. Younger’s NuPolar polycarbonate FT28 lenses feature an exclusive 8 base offering (recommended for wrap frames), providing a wide Rx range for a polycarbonate polarized flat-top lens; they are available in gray and brown. Expo attendees can pick up a newly revised edition of the educational brochure “The Art & Science of NuPolar” at the Younger booth.

Ice-Tech will showcase its Thin-Tech Lens, an individualized digitally created prescription lens made for wraparound sunglasses. According to Ice-Tech, the Thin-Tech process offers better optical quality, less weight, thinner lenses and greater cosmetic appeal than a bulky lens. A proprietary technology is used to customize individual wrap-around high-base curve lenses and is equally effective on PALs, dual zone and single vision designs.

Also new in the single vision category are Optima’s three additions to its HyperIndex 1.74 lens line: 1.74 Uncoated Spherical SFSV for Free-Form, 1.74 Uncoated Aspheric SFSV and 1.74 Uncoated Double Concave. The company is also offering the new 1.67 Uncoated Spherical SFSV for Free-Form lens.

Chemilens/UVCO is releasing the Oculite series of free-form ready blank spherical SFSV lenses in 1.60, 1.67, and 1.74. The Oculite high-index series is also available in aspherical design for typical Rx processing. All three materials: 1.60, 1.67 and 1.74 have 99 percent of light transmittance and also block 99 percent of UV up to 400nm. More than 10 design base curves are available for each index and compatible with most of AR coatings. 1.74 SFSV lens comes with the impact-resistance primer hard coating as a standard.

New Thindex 1.70 high index lenses from Vision-Ease Lens combine thin, lightweight comfort with superior optics. The lenses are available in A SFSV, A FSV SuperHydro AR and the Novella short corridor progressive. Thindex 1.70 lenses are thinner and lighter than 1.67 lenses, and rival 1.74 high index lenses for greater comfort in mid to stronger prescriptions, according to Vision-Ease. They feature a higher Abbe value than 1.67 and 1.74, resulting in less chromatic aberration. SuperHydro anti-reflective coating on the FSV offering allows lenses to transmit maximum light for sharper night vision and reduced glare, while offering effective liquid repellence, high abrasion resistance and anti-static properties.

VSP Labs is showcasing its new, in-house line of anti-reflective coatings, Unity Performance Coatings, including: Unity, Unity Plus and Unity Elite. Available with all major manufacturer lenses, Unity Performance Coatings are produced onsite in VSP’s wholly owned labs. They are long-lasting and durable coatings that reduce glare, resist scratching, and are easy to clean. Expo attendees interested in the latest lens coating technologies can also see Essilor’s new generation of Crizal Alizé lenses, which offer improved cleanability and durability. The lenses feature an enhanced topcoat and a proprietary High Surface Density (HSD) process that densely packs the topcoat molecules together so fingerprints, dirt, oil or smudges can’t stick to lenses. Essilor’s exclusive Pad Control System ensures edging precision.