The ultra-miniature projector innovators, Microvision, have announced that they have managed to integrate the very first 'direct green' laser samples into pico projector prototypes, in what could be a revolutionary step for miniature projectors.

The move takes the industry one step closer to being able to commercialise green laser-using PicoP(R) display engines, which could offer significant commercial advantages in price, power, performance and size.

Microvision's vice president of research and development, Sid Madhavan, said they had been incredibly pleased with the performance of the early prototypes.

"These encouraging results give us confidence that direct green laser diodes will be capable of meeting the performance requirements for integration into our PicoP display platform," he said.

Current pico projectors use red and blue laser diodes and a frequency-doubled 'synthetic' green laser to create a full colour image, which needs a complex conversion process of multiple components held to tight tolerances, making manufacturing particularly challenging.

Direct green lasers can simplify design and manufacturing processes through their abilities to produce green light natively and would cost less money and take less time to manufacture.

Microvision appears to have won a global race to develop direct green lasers, involving five separate developers, each with the intention of producing a direct green laser by the end of 2011.