Delta Laser eye surgery machine concept for Alcon
Email this case study to a friend
Making laser eye surgery equipment more approachable
According to Alcon Research, nearly 4 million laser eye correction procedures are performed annually around the world, with the number increasing every year. To supply this burgeoning market, Alcon—a world leader in eye care pharmaceutical products and device—approached IDEO to help create the industrial and interaction design for its new state-of-the-art laser eye surgery equipment.
With complex ergonomic considerations for both patient and doctor, the design needed to offer intuitive operation and ease of maintenance while conveying the technological sophistication expected by all users. Using Alcon’s initial prototypes, plus observations and interviews with refractive surgeons, optometrists, assistants and patients, IDEO created Delta, a contemporary design that uses glass panels and exposed metal surfaces to address key structural and technological needs, and provide doctors and clinics the option of customization.
The design features a unique head that floats above the patient and contains the optics for the laser. A console houses the large, powerful excimer laser and controls. Together, the head and console allow for unimpeded visual and verbal contact between patient and doctor. The user interface puts frequently used controls easily within the operator’s reach, and considers the patient’s point of view to create a calming perspective. To speak to the emotional needs of onlooking family members, the machine was designed to look approachable and reliable, with glass panels on the console resulting in a furniture-like aesthetic.
Project date: 2008