MiEye – Wearable Light Sensor

  • 2022

  • Design Research

Commissioned By:

Circadian Health Innovations

Designed In:


Unhealthy light behaviour can lead to poor health. MiEye provides constant monitoring of the types of light people are exposed to throughout their day. Through mathematical models, the device understands your personal circadian rhythms and guides you towards healthy light exposures. Making the unconscious and confusing effects of light conscious.

Image: Narelle Portanier
Image: Narelle Portanier
Image: Narelle Portanier
Image: Narelle Portanier
Image: Narelle Portanier
Image: Narelle Portanier
Image: Narelle Portanier
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  • Medical research shows that “unhealthy light behaviour” can result in chronic conditions such as liver disease, depression, hypertension and cardiovascular problems, impaired muscle function, poor sleep, and insulin resistance or type 2 diabetes. Yet, it is very difficult to understand your own light exposures let alone change these behaviours. Working with sleep researchers at Monash University a need was identified to collect data on people’s light exposures. These sensors would help to guide people towards healthy behaviours while making long term, real-world participant data accessible to circadian and sleep scientists. Helping these researchers to advance knowledge in this emerging field.

  • Typically devices developed in research contexts prioritise functionality over user experience, resulting in prototypes that are difficult for non-expert research participants to use. Through centring a human-centred design process we were able to develop a device that not only met the functional requirements of our research partners but met the needs of our end-users. An attractive device that was durable, easy to wear, easy to charge, and thoughtfully crafted. Close collaboration between design and electronics development enabled all elements of the design (including electronics) to be produced and prototyped in the cutting edge facilities of SensiLab at Monash University.

  • As we were working with a startup company – and in a research setting – we needed to us to think about scalable manufacturing processes right from the beginning. We focussed on advanced digitally controlled manufacturing approaches that were scalable from a single unit to several hundred units, and beyond. All of the devices needed to have a reliable and repeatable performance from one unit to the next to meet the needs of the research application. Currently, this device is being economically mass-produced in small batches for sale to international research labs while the device scales up to consumer applications.

  • The design embraces authentic materials that are crafted to a high level of finish. We embraced a jewellery like finish, using anodised aluminium in a variety of colours. A frosted polycarbonate diffuser enabled us to create a window that diffuses the light into the sensor while also incorporating an antenna window for wireless connectivity. It was important that the device not look like a camera so that users felt comfortable wearing it all day without being perceived as an invasion of privacy. The charger is considered an important component of the design. Drawing on a sleep narrative of a bed/pillow, the top surface appears to be ‘soft,’ allowing the wearable to lie down to go to sleep. The charger also lights up, reading data from the wearable sensor and providing feedback to the user in the form of a customised light pattern for a nighttime wind down, and morning wakeup light driven by the user's custom data. Creating a feedback loop of smart lighting builds a relationship with the user. Artistically interpreting research data that is often difficult for participants to understand. An app provides suggestions for users to modify their unhealthy light behaviours.