Polycarbonate Lens Material

A great Overall Value

Like Trivex lens materials, polycarbonate materials were used to make aircraft cockpit canopies and first created in the early 1970’s.  The mission of the military was to find an optically clear material that provided superior impact resistance.  NASA found uses for the material in astronaut visors and the windows of the space shuttles.  Polycarbonate materials made their way into consumer goods in the 1980’s as a safe and affordable alternative to glass and other plastic lens materials and became the favorite of manufacturers of many kinds of goods including products used by men and women working in hazardous job environments.

Poly, as it is referred to, has an index refraction value of 1.58 and features natural UV protection from harmful UV-A and UB-B radiation.  Poly is considered to be superior to plastic lenses for eyewear and is similar to Trivex materials in strength, but Poly is usually preferred because of its generally lower cost.  Poly is the lens choice for children’s eyewear because it is light and impact resistant and these same features make it a great choice for sports/recreation spectacles and for safety applications. 

Polycarbonate lens materials have been constantly improved since they were introduced as a lens material in the 1980’s.  Poly lenses from five years ago are inferior to the poly lens materials of today largely because improvements demanded by the music industry resulted in a better material for CD/DVD’s that are used in producing music CD’s.   These improvements in Poly material have now been incorporated into eyeglass lenses too.  As the optical quality improved for the music industry, so has the optical quality of polycarbonate used in the optical lenses manufactured for eyeglasses today.  These days, poly is an excellent lens material free of the many negatives attributes added to the finished product by the manufacturing process of yesteryear and today the polycarbonate lens is a great overall choice for its light weight, clear optics, UV resistance, impact resistance, and relatively low cost compared to Trivex and plastics of similar index. 

Poly is perfect for children lens products, safety applications, and even drill mounts lenses.  It’s blend of low cost and quality optical attributes make it a great choice for many eyeglass applications.

Eyeglass Universe
Midwest Optical Associates, Inc.
8114 Paul Manors Drive, Suite 500
West Chester, OH, 45069-0219
Phone: (888) 989-3931
Text: (513) 338-4895
Fax: (855) 398-3937
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