Battery-Free Eye Tracker on Glasses

Tianxing Liand Xia Zhou
Department of Computer Science, Dartmouth College


This paper presents a battery-free wearable eye tracker that tracks both the 2D position and diameter of a pupil based on its light absorption property. With a few near-infrared (NIR) lights and photodiodes around the eye, NIR lights sequentially illuminate the eye from various directions while photodiodes sense spatial patterns of reflected light, which are used to infer pupil’s position and diameter on the fly via a lightweight inference algorithm. The system also exploits characteristics of different eye movement stages and adjusts its sensing and computation accordingly for further energy savings. A prototype is built with off-the-shelf hardware components and integrated into a regular pair of glasses. Experiments with 22 participants show that the system achieves 0.8-mm mean error in tracking pupil position (2.3 mm at the 95th percentile) and 0.3-mm mean error in tracking pupil diameter (0.9 mm at the 95th percentile) at 120-Hz output frame rate, consuming 395-microwatt mean power supplied by two small, thin solar cells on glasses side arms.




We sincerely thank reviewers for their insightful feedback. Special thanks to Sung Jun Park, Babacar Gadiaga, Siqi Wang, and other DartNets lab members for helping label images. This work is supported in part by National Science Foundation (CNS-1552924) and the Alfred P. Sloan fellowship. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the funding agencies or others.


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