Once upon a time, there were some rare Australian sheep with extraordinary vision. The small group had bionic, artificial eyes surgically implanted beneath their retinas for three months. These sheep were part of a medical trial to help those who have lost their sight owing to certain types of blindness. As a result, an application has been submitted to begin human patient testing.

A group of scholars from the University of Sydney and the University of New South Wales is leading the study. The Phoenix 99 stimulates the retina of the user and is wirelessly connected to a small camera mounted to a pair of spectacles.

According to the WHO, at least 2.2 billion people worldwide suffer from vision impairment, which can vary from mild to severe blindness. Despite the fact that the use of bionic eye systems to treat blindness is still in its infancy, one study estimates that the market will be worth $426 million by 2028 because of rapid technological advancements.