Microscope apparatus
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US 20040090670A1
(19) United States
(12) Patent Application Publication (10) Pub. No.: US 2004/0090670 A1
Kawanabe et al.
(43) Pub. Date:
(54) MICROSCOPE APPARATUS
(75)
(30)
Inventors: Hideyuki Kawanabe, Hachioji-shi (JP);
May 13, 2004
Foreign Application Priority Data
Sep. 19, 2002
(JP) .................................... .. 2002-273955
Shinya Sakamoto, Hachioji-shi (JP);
Mitsuhiko Saito, Hachioji-shi (JP)
Publication Classi?cation
Correspondence Address;
(51)
Int. Cl.7 ................................................... .. G02B 21/06
FRISHAUF, HOLTZ, GOODMAN & CHICK,
PC
767 THIRD AVENUE
(52)
US. Cl. ............................................................ .. 359/388
25TH FLOOR
A microscope apparatus has a driver mounted on a main
NEW YORK, NY 10017_2023 (Us)
body of the microscope apparatus, a sensor Which detects a
stopped state of the driver, a poWer supply Which supplies
(57) _
ABSTRAC_T
_
(73) Assignee; Olympus Optical Co” Ltd” Tokyo (JP)
poWer to the sensor, a drive controller Which controls driving
(21) Appl, No;
10/664,640
supply to the sensor from the poWer supply in accordance
(22) Filed:
Sep. 17, 2003
of the driver, and a controller Which controls the poWer
With a drive control signal sent from the drive controller to
the driver.
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Patent Application Publication
May 13, 2004 Sheet 1 0f 3
US 2004/0090670 A1
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Patent Application Publication
May 13, 2004 Sheet 2 0f 3
US 2004/0090670 A1
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Patent Application Publication
May 13, 2004 Sheet 3 0f 3
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US 2004/0090670 A1
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May 13, 2004
US 2004/0090670 A1
MICROSCOPE APPARATUS
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED
APPLICATIONS
BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
[0012] A microscope apparatus according to the ?rst
aspect of the invention is characteriZed by comprising: a
driver mounted on a main body of the microscope apparatus;
This application is based upon and claims the
a sensor Which detects a stopped state of the driver; a poWer
bene?t of priority from the prior Japanese Patent Application
supply Which supplies poWer to the sensor; a drive controller
Which controls driving of the driver; and a controller Which
controls the poWer supply to the sensor from the poWer
supply in accordance With a drive control signal sent from
the drive controller to the driver.
[0001]
No. 2002-273955, ?led Sep. 19, 2002, the entire contents of
Which are incorporated herein by reference.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
[0002]
1. Field of the Invention
[0003]
The invention relates to a microscope apparatus
including a sensor Which detects a state of a driver such as
a stage.
[0004] 2. Description of the Related Art
[0005] Recent microscope apparatuses frequently used
include electronic microscopes of the type that electrically
controls various drivers that drive, for example, a revolver
used to change an objective lens and a stage used to mount
a sample as an observation object.
[0006]
To control the operation of such a driver, it is
necessary to detect the current state of the driver by using a
[0013] A microscope apparatus according to the second
aspect of the invention is characteriZed by comprising: a ?rst
driver Which is mounted on a main body of the microscope
apparatus and Which is driven by a manual operation or an
electrical operation; a ?rst sensor Which detects a stopped
state of the ?rst driver; a second driver Which is mounted on
the main body of the microscope apparatus and Which is
driven only by an electrical operation; a second sensor
Which detects a stopped state of the second driver; a poWer
supply Which supplies poWer to the ?rst sensor and the
second sensor; a drive controller Which controls the driving
of the second driver; and a controller Which controls the
poWer supply to the second sensor from the poWer supply in
accordance With a drive control signal sent from the drive
controller to the second driver.
sensor provided as a sensor section such as a photo-inter
rupter or a Hall integrated circuit (IC).
[0014] A microscope apparatus according to the third
[0007] Microscope apparatuses using sensors for detecting
aspect of the invention is characteriZed by comprising: a
driver mounted on a main body of the microscope apparatus;
the state of drivers include those of the type described
hereunder.
supply Which supplies poWer to the sensor; an imager Which
[0008] A main body of the microscope apparatus has tWo
sensors, namely, an upper limit sensor and a loWer limit
a sensor Which detects a stopped state of the driver; a poWer
images an observation image acquired by the main body of
the microscope apparatus; a state detection section Which
sensor, Which are disposed at a predetermined spacing along
a movement direction of a stage. In addition, the main body
has a light shield provided in the stage. Upon movement of
the stage, the light shield enters an optical aXis of a photo
detects an eXposure state of the imager; and a controller
Which stops the poWer supply to the sensor depending on the
eXposure state of the imager, Which is detected by the state
detection section.
interrupter and thereby blocks the optical path.
[0015] A microscope apparatus according to the fourth
[0009]
When a user operates an operation sWitch of the
main body of the microscope apparatus to drive the stage
upWard, the light shield enters the optical aXis of the
photo-interrupter of the upper limit sensor to thereby block
the optical path. Thereby, the upper limit sensor becomes the
ON state and detects that the stage has been driven up to the
upper limit. Conversely, When the stage is driven doWnWard,
the light shield enters the optical aXis of the photo-inter
rupter of the loWer limit sensor to thereby block the optical
path. Thereby, the loWer limit sensor becomes the ON state
and detects that the stage has been driven doWn to the loWer
limit.
[0010] In the con?guration described above, poWer is
continually supplied to the upper limit sensor and the loWer
limit sensor, regardless of the detection of the light shield
according to the driving of the stage. Therefore, even When
the state Where the stage is not driven at all, poWer continu
ally ?oWs to the upper limit sensor and the loWer limit
sensor.
[0011] To overcome the problem, as disclosed in Jpn. Pat.
Appln. KOKAI Publication No. 2000-184116, a scheme has
been proposed in Which an oscillatory circuit is used to
supply poWer to sensors at predetermined intervals and
thereby to reduce poWer consumption.
aspect of the invention is characteriZed by comprising: a
plurality of drivers mounted on a main body of the micro
scope apparatus; a plurality of sensors to individually detect
stopped states of the plurality of drivers; a poWer supply
Which supplies poWer to the plurality of sensors; and a
selecting section Which selects at least one of the plurality of
sensor to be supplied With poWer from the poWer supply.
[0016] Advantages of the invention Will be set forth in the
description Which folloWs, and in part Will be obvious from
the description, or may be learned by practice of the inven
tion. Advantages of the invention may be realiZed and
obtained by means of the instrumentalities and combinations
particularly pointed out hereinafter.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL
VIEWS OF THE DRAWING
[0017] The accompanying draWings, Which are incorpo
rated in and constitute a part of the speci?cation, illustrate
embodiments of the invention, and together With the general
description given above and the detailed description of the
embodiments given beloW, serve to eXplain the principles of
the invention.
[0018] FIG. 1 is a schematic vieW of the con?guration of
a ?rst embodiment according to the invention;
May 13,2004
US 2004/0090670 A1
[0019] FIG. 2 is a schematic vieW of the con?guration of
a second embodiment according to the invention;
[0020] FIG. 3 is a schematic vieW of the con?guration of
a third embodiment according to the invention;
[0021] FIG. 4 is a schematic vieW of the con?guration of
a fourth embodiment according to the invention;
[0022] FIG. 5 is a schematic vieW of the con?guration of
a control system used in the fourth embodiment; and
[0023]
FIG. 6 is a schematic vieW of the con?guration of
a ?fth embodiment according to the invention.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE
INVENTION
[0024] Embodiments of the invention Will be described
hereinbeloW With reference to the accompanying draWings.
[0025]
FIG. 1 is a schematic vieW of the con?guration of
[0034]
Suppose that, in response to a sWitch operation as
described above, the stage 2 is driven upWardly, and the light
shield 11 reaches the position of the upper limit sensor 12.
In this case, the stage drive controller 14 blocks the optical
path of the photo-interrupter, and the upper limit sensor 12
sWitches to the ON state. Then, the upper limit sensor 12
detects that the sample 6 over the stage 2 has been driven up
to a design upper limit at Which the sample 6 does not collide
With the objective lens 3. A noti?cation of the detection
result is then noti?ed to the stage drive controller 14. Upon
receipt of the noti?cation, the stage drive controller 14
controls the stage 2 not to further move upWard.
[0035] Also When an operation of the sWitch is performed
to move the stage 2 doWnWard, operations and control
similar to those described above are performed. That is,
When the loWer limit sensor 13 detects that the stage 2 has
been driven doWn to a design loWer limit, a noti?cation of
the detection result is noti?ed to the stage drive controller
14. Having received the noti?cation, the stage drive con
a microscope apparatus to Which a ?rst embodiment of the
troller 14 controls the stage 2 not to further move doWnWard.
invention is applied.
[0036] The microscope main body 1 further has a sensor
poWer supply controller 15. The sensor poWer supply con
troller 15 controls the poWer supply to the upper limit sensor
12 and the loWer limit sensor 13. Upon termination of a
[0026] Referring to FIG. 1, a microscope main body 1 has
an electrically-driven stage 2 that can be vertically driven, as
a driver. Asample 6 to be microscopically observed is placed
on the stage 2.
[0027] A revolver 5 is provided above the stage 2. The
revolver 5 holds a plurality of objective lenses 3, and
selectively change the objective lens 3 to be positioned on
the optical ads.
sWitch operation in the stage drive controller 14 and the
movement of the stage 2, the sensor poWer supply controller
15 controls the poWer supply to the upper limit sensor 12 and
the loWer limit sensor 13 to be stopped in accordance With
a command received from the stage drive controller 14.
Thus, the sensor poWer supply controller 15 controls the
poWer supply to the upper limit sensor 12 and the loWer limit
[0028] A light source 7 is situated above the microscope
main body 1. An aperture diaphragm 8, a vieW diaphragm 9,
drive controller 14.
and a corner cube 10 are disposed along an optical path of
illumination light emitted from the light source 7.
[0037]
[0029] Illumination light emitted from the light source 7 is
irradiated onto the sample 6 through the aperture diaphragm
8, the vieW diaphragm 9, and the corner cube 10. Light
poWer supply from the sensor poWer supply controller 15 to
sensor 13 only during operation of the sWitch of the stage
The sensor poWer supply controller 15 is connected
to a connector terminal 16. The connector terminal 16
outputs signals individually indicative of the state of the
the upper limit sensor 12 and the loWer limit sensor 13.
re?ected from the sample 6 is guided to be incident on an
ocular lens 4 through the objective lens 3 and the corner
cube 10. Thereby, an observer can observe the sample 6.
[0038]
[0030] The stage 2 is connected to a stage drive controller
14. In response to an external operation, the stage drive
sensor poWer supply controller 15. The state of the poWer
supply from the sensor poWer supply controller 15 to the
controller 14 sends a control signal to a stage drive motor
upper limit sensor 12 and the loWer limit sensor 13 can be
The connector terminal 16 can be connected to an
external device (not shoWn) that enables monitoring of the
ON/OFF state of poWer supply, Which is controlled by the
(not shoWn), Whereby the stage 2 is electrically driven in the
monitored for each of the upper limit sensor 12 and the
vertical direction.
loWer limit sensor 13.
[0031]
In the microscope main body 1, an upper limit
sensor 12 and a loWer limit sensor 13, individually formed
of photo-interrupters, are disposed at a predetermined spac
ing therebetWeen along the movement direction of the stage
2.
[0032] A light shield 11 is provided to the stage 2. The
light shield 11 vertically moves together With the stage 2.
Upon entering the optical aXis of the photo-interrupter, the
light shield 11 blocks the optical path.
[0033] The stage drive controller 14 has a sWitch (not
shoWn) that enables a user to arbitrarily select the upWard/
doWnWard drive direction of the stage 2 by the stage drive
controller 14. Upon a user operation of the sWitch, a signal
directing the upWard/doWnWard drive direction of the stage
2 to the stage drive motor (not shoWn) is output.
[0039] In the con?guration described above, upon opera
tion of the sWitch of the stage drive controller 14, the sensor
poWer supply controller 15 is activated to commence the
poWer supply to the upper limit sensor 12 and the loWer limit
sensor 13. In response, the upper limit sensor 12 and the
loWer limit sensor 13 are individually activated. In addition,
the sensor poWer supply controller 15 sends to the connector
terminal 16 signals indicative of the states of poWer supply
to the upper limit sensor 12 and the loWer limit sensor 13.
[0040] In this state, after a short period of time elapsed
from the instance of the sWitch operation, the stage drive
controller 14 outputs a control signal to the stage drive motor
(not shoWn). Thereby, the stage 2 is driven upWard or
doWnWard.
[0041] Upon termination of the operation of the sWitch of
the stage drive controller 14, the stage drive motor (not
May 13, 2004
US 2004/0090670 A1
shown) is deactivated, and the movement of the stage 2 is
controller 201, a signal directing the rotational driving of the
stopped. Subsequently, after elapse of a short period of time,
revolver 209 is output to a revolver drive motor (not shoWn).
The revolver 209 can be rotationally driven not only by an
the stage drive controller 14 sends a signal indicative of the
above-described instance also to the sensor poWer supply
controller 15. In response to the signal, the sensor poWer
supply controller 15 controls the poWer supply to the upper
limit sensor 12 and the loWer limit sensor 13 to be stopped.
In addition, the sensor poWer supply controller 15 sends a
signal indicative of poWer off also to the connector terminal
16.
[0042] As described above, the microscope apparatus is
electrical operation but also by a manual operation in such
a manner that, While holding the objective lenses 3 by hand,
the overall revolver 209 is rotated.
[0050] Five small openings 208 are provided above the
revolver 209, corresponding to the positions of the objective
lenses 3. Additionally provided there are sensors 205 each
formed of a photo-re?ector, corresponding to the small
openings 208. The sensors 205 are each disposed to match
designed to permit the poWer supply to the upper limit
the position of the small opening 208 When the objective
sensor 12 and the loWer limit sensor 13, Which detect the
lens 3 matches the optical aXis. In the state Where the sensor
state of the stage 2, only during the movement of the stage
2. This enables prevention of unnecessary poWer supply to
205 matches the position of the small opening 208, the
the upper limit sensor 12 and the loWer limit sensor 13.
troller 201 a signal notifying that the objective lens 3 has
Consequently, poWer consumption can be reduced, com
pared to the conventional case in Which poWer is continually
matched the position of the optical aXis. Upon receipt of the
supplied to the sensors even While the stage is not driven at
all.
sensor 205 turns ON and sends to the revolver drive con
signal from the sensor 205, the revolver drive controller 201
sends to the revolver drive motor (not shoWn) a signal for
deactivating the rotation of the revolver 209 in the noti?ed
[0043] Further, signals indicative of states of poWer supply
state.
to the upper limit sensor 12 and the loWer limit sensor 13 can
[0051] The stage 204 controllable only by an electrical
operation is driven by a stage drive controller 202 in the
be transmitted to the outside. Accordingly, the states of
poWer supply to the individual sensors can be monitored
from the outside.
[0044] According to the embodiment described above,
When the movement of the stage 2 has been stopped by the
stage drive controller 14, the sensor poWer supply controller
15 controls the poWer supply to the upper limit sensor 12 and
the loWer limit sensor 13 to be stopped in response to the
command issued by the stage drive controller 14. Alterna
tively, the embodiment may be arranged such that When the
stage drive controller 14 controls the stage 2 to be driven, the
sensor poWer supply controller 15 supplies poWer to the
upper limit sensor 12 and the loWer limit sensor 13 in
response to the command issued by the stage drive controller
14.
[0045] A second embodiment of the present invention Will
be described hereinbeloW.
[0046]
FIG. 2 is a schematic vieW of the con?guration of
the second embodiment, Wherein the same reference numer
als as those of FIG. 1 are used for the same portions.
vertical direction. The drive state of the stage 204 is detected
by the sensor 206, and is noti?ed to the stage drive controller
202. In this case, the operations of the stage drive controller
202 and the sensor 206 are the same as those in the ?rst
embodiment.
[0052] In addition, a sensor poWer supply controller 203 is
provided in the microscope main body 1. The sensor poWer
supply controller 203 controls the poWer supply to the
sensors 205 and 206. Upon receipt of a signal for stopping
the movement of the stage 204 from the stage drive con
troller 202, the sensor poWer supply controller 203 controls
poWer to the sensor 206 to be stopped. On the other hand,
hoWever, the sensor poWer supply controller 203 alWays
keeps supplying poWer to the sensor 205, regardless of the
drive state of the electrically-driven revolver 209.
[0053]
The sensor poWer supply controller 203 is con
nected to a connector terminal 207. The connector terminal
207 outputs signals individually indicative of the state of the
poWer supply from the sensor poWer supply controller 203
to the sensors 206 and 205.
[0047] The second embodiment has a feature in having a
driver controllable by a manual or electrical operation and a
[0054]
driver controllable only by electrical operation.
external device (not shoWn) that enables monitoring of the
[0048] The driver controllable only by electrical operation
ON/OFF state of poWer supply from the sensor poWer
supply controller 203 to the sensors 206 and 205.
The connector terminal 207 can be connected to an
corresponds to the stage 2 described in the ?rst embodiment.
Since the con?guration relevant to the stage 2 is the same as
[0055] In the con?guration described above, upon receipt
that in the ?rst embodiment, illustration thereof is omitted
of a command for driving the stage 204, the stage drive
controller 202 sends a driving signal to the stage drive motor
from FIG. 2. The driver controllable by a manual or
electrical operation corresponds to, for eXample, an electri
cally driven revolver.
[0049] Referring to FIG. 2, the microscope main body 1
has an electrically-driven revolver 209 to Which at most ?ve
objective lenses 3 can be ?tted. The revolver 209 is con
nected to a revolver drive controller 201. The revolver drive
controller 201 has a sWitch (not shoWn) that arbitrarily
(not shoWn), and the driving of the stage 204 is then started.
Concurrently, the sensor poWer supply controller 203
receives a signal indicative of the stage drive commence
ment from the stage drive controller 202. In response, the
sensor poWer supply controller 203 controls poWer be sup
plied to the sensor 206, and then outputs to the connector
terminal 207 a signal indicative of the state Where poWer is
being supplied to the sensor 206.
selects a CW (clockwise) rotational direction of the revolver
209 or a CCW (counterclockwise) rotational direction
thereof. Upon a sWitch operation of the revolver drive
[0056] The sensor poWer supply controller 203 alWays
keeps supplying poWer to the sensor 205, regardless of the
May 13, 2004
US 2004/0090670 A1
drive state of the revolver 209, and outputs to the connector
terminal 207 a signal indicative that poWer is being supplied
to the sensor 205.
[0057] Thereafter, upon receipt of a command for stopping
the movement of the stage 204, the stage drive controller
202 sends a stopping signal to the stage drive motor (not
shoWn), and the movement of the stage 204 is then stopped.
Concurrently, the sensor poWer supply controller 203
receives a signal indicative of the stage-drive stopping signal
from the stage drive controller 202, and, in response, stops
the poWer supply to the sensor 206. Then, the sensor poWer
supply controller 203 outputs also to the connector terminal
207 a signal indicative that the poWer supply has been
stopped. On the other hand, the sensor poWer supply con
troller 203 alWays keeps supplying poWer to the sensor 205,
regardless of the state Where the poWer supply to the sensor
206 has been stopped folloWing the stop of the driving of the
stage 204. Then, the sensor poWer supply controller 203
outputs also to the connector terminal 207 a signal indicative
that poWer is being continually supplied to the sensor 205.
[0058] Thus, the microscope apparatus according to the
second embodiment has both the driver (revolver 209)
controllable by a manual or electrical operation and the
driver (stage 204) controllable only by an electrical opera
tion. Also in this case, in association With the driving of the
stage 204, poWer is supplied only to the sensor 206 corre
[0064] The sensor 304 is responsible for detecting the state
of the revolver 306, and the sensor 305 is responsible for
detecting the state of the stage 307.
[0065]
The sensor poWer supply controller 303 is con
nected to a sWitch 309.
[0066]
The sWitch 309 is formed of an element such as an
ordinary sWitch, is associated With the sensor 304. In addi
tion, the sWitch 309 is responsible for ON/OFF sWitching in
terms of signal transfer to the sensor poWer supply controller
303.
[0067] In response to a signal sent from the sWitch 309, the
sensor poWer supply controller 303 changes a method of
poWer supply to the sensor 304.
[0068] In the above state, When the sWitch 309 is set to
OFF, the sensor poWer supply controller 303 is enabled to
perform ON/OFF control for the poWer supply to the sensor
304. In speci?c, poWer is supplied to the sensor 304 only
When a signal at the time of driving of the revolver 306 is
sent to the sensor poWer supply controller 303 from the
revolver drive controller 302. When the poWer supply to the
sensor 304 is stopped, a physical stopper controllable only
by the revolver drive controller 302 is applied to the revolver
306. When the sWitch is set to OFF, the stopper enters the
hole above the revolver 306 and the revolver 306 cannot be
rotated. Upon receipt of rotation instruction, the revolver
sponding to the stage 204 controllable only by electrical
operation. Accordingly, unnecessary poWer consumption for
becomes in a rotatable state by lifting the stopper.
the sensor 206 in the stopped state of the stage 204 can be
[0069]
When the sWitch 309 is set to ON, the sensor poWer
reduced, and poWer consumption in the overall apparatus
supply controller 303 is enabled to alWays keep supplying
can be reduced.
poWer to the sensor 304.
[0059]
[0070] Only When a signal is received at the time of
driving of the stage 307, the sensor poWer supply controller
In the second embodiment, up to ?ve objective
lenses 3 can be attached to the electrically driven revolver
209. HoWever, even With a revolver to Which siX objective
lenses 3 can be attached, similar effects can be eXpected by
providing siX small openings 208. Of course, the invention
may be applied to a revolver on Which any other number of
objective lenses 3 can be attached.
[0060] A third embodiment of the invention Will be
described hereinbeloW.
[0061] A revolver and a stage of a driver in the third
embodiment are similar to those in the second embodiment,
so that description thereof Will be omitted herefrom. In the
third embodiment, only portions relative to control systems
Will be selected from the microscope apparatus con?gura
tion and Will be described With reference to FIG. 3.
[0062] Referring to FIG. 3, a stage drive controller 301
controls vertical driving of a stage 307, and outputs a signal
indicative of the drive state of the stage 307 to a sensor
poWer supply controller 303. A revolver drive controller 302
controls the rotation of a revolver 306, and outputs a signal
indicative of the drive state of the revolver 306 to the sensor
poWer supply controller 303.
[0063]
The sensor poWer supply controller 303 controls
the poWer supply to sensors 304 and 305, and sends to a
connector terminal 308 signals indicative of the states of
poWer supply to the sensors 304 and 305. The connector
terminal 308 can be connected to an eXternal device (not
shoWn) that enables monitoring of the ON/OFF state of
poWer supply from the sensor poWer supply controller 303
to the sensors 305 and 304.
303 supplies poWer to the sensor 305 associated With the
stage 307, regardless of the state of the sWitch 309.
[0071] As described above, according to the third embodi
ment, since the sWitch 309 is provided, the method of poWer
supply to the sensor 304 for the revolver 306 can be changed
by a user’s manual operation. This enables appropriate
poWer control to be implemented also for the poWer supply
to the sensor 304 associated With the driver (revolver 306)
that is controllable by a manual or electrical operation.
Consequently, poWer consumption in the overall apparatus
can be reduced.
[0072] A fourth embodiment of the invention Will be
described hereinbeloW.
[0073]
FIG. 4 is a schematic vieW of the con?guration of
the fourth embodiment, in Which the same reference numer
als denote the same portions in FIG. 1.
[0074] The fourth embodiment is characteriZed in that
imaging means is provided in the microscope main body 1.
[0075] The microscope main body 1 includes objective
lenses 3 and a silver ?lm camera 410 provided as imaging
means on an optical path of light re?ected from the sample
6. The re?ected light is guided to be incident on the side of
the ocular lens 4 through the objective lens 3 and the corner
cube 10. The silver ?lm camera 410 includes a shutter 411,
an imaging lens 412, and a ?lm 413.
[0076] In this case, illumination light emitted from the
light source 7 is irradiated onto the sample 6 through the
May 13, 2004
US 2004/0090670 A1
aperture diaphragm 8, the vieW diaphragm 9, and the corner
cube 10. The light re?ected from the sample 6 travels
through the objective lens 3, passes through the corner cube
10 as guided thereby, and is then input to the silver ?lm
camera 410. At this time, When the silver ?lm camera 410 is
operated to open the shutter 411, the re?ected light is
irradiated onto the surface of the ?lm 413 through the
imaging lens 412 in the silver ?lm camera 410. In this state,
an observation image of the sample 6 can be captured by
eXposing the ?lm 413 to the re?ected light for a predeter
mined time.
[0077] Referring to FIG. 5, portions relevant to control
systems Will be selected from the microscope apparatus
con?guration and Will be described. In the fourth embodi
ment, only a stage is provided as a driver, as in the ?rst
embodiment.
[0078]
In this con?guration, a stage drive controller 401
controls the vertical driving of a stage 404. A sensor poWer
supply controller 402 controls the poWer supply to a sensor
403, and sends to a connector terminal 405 a signal indica
tive of the state of poWer supply to the sensor 403. The
connector terminal 405 can be connected to an eXternal
device (not shoWn) that enables monitoring of the ON/OFF
[0083] A ?fth embodiment of the invention Will be
described hereinbeloW.
[0084] A revolver and a stage of a driver in the ?fth
embodiment are similar to those in the third embodiment, so
that description thereof Will be omitted herefrom. In the ?fth
embodiment, portions relative to control systems Will be
selected from the microscope apparatus con?guration and
Will be described With reference to FIG. 6.
[0085] Referring to FIG. 6, a stage drive controller 501
controls the vertical driving of a stage 507, and outputs a
signal indicative of the operational state of the stage 507 to
a sensor poWer supply controller 503. A revolver drive
controller 502 controls the rotation of a revolver 506, and
outputs a signal indicative of the operational state of the
revolver 506 to the sensor poWer supply controller 503.
[0086] The sensor poWer supply controller 503 controls
the poWer supply to the sensors 504 and 505, and sends
signals indicative of the states of poWer supply to the sensors
504 and 505 to a connector terminal 508. The connector
terminal 508 can be connected to an eXternal device (not
shoWn) that enables monitoring of the ON/OFF state of
poWer supply from the sensor poWer supply controller 503
state for the poWer supply from the sensor poWer supply
to the sensors 504 and 505.
controller 402 to the sensor 403.
[0087] The sensors 504 and 505 detect the states of the
revolver 506 and the stage 507.
[0079] A silver ?lm camera 406 has a sWitch (not shoWn)
for opening a shutter 407. Upon depression of the sWitch of
the silver ?lm camera 406, a shutter opening signal is output
to the shutter 407, and the shutter 407 is thereby opened.
Subsequently, after elapse of a predetermined period of time,
a shutter closing signal is output to the shutter 407, and the
shutter 407 is thereby closed.
[0080]
In this state, When the sWitch of the silver ?lm
camera 406 is depressed, a signal is sent from the silver ?lm
camera 406 to the sensor poWer supply controller 402. In
response, the sensor poWer supply controller 402 stops the
poWer supply to the sensor 403, and outputs to the connector
terminal 405 a signal indicating that the poWer supply to the
sensor 403 has been stopped. Subsequently, after elapse of
a short period of time, When a shutter opening signal is sent
from the silver ?lm camera 406 to the shutter 407, the shutter
407 is closed. Then, after elapse of a predetermined period
of time, When a shutter closing signal is sent from the silver
?lm camera 406 to the shutter 407, the shutter 407 is thereby
closed.
[0081] In the closing operation of the shutter 407, after a
short period of time elapsed from the instance of closure of
the shutter 407, a signal is sent from the silver ?lm camera
406 to the sensor poWer supply controller 402. In response
to the signal, the sensor poWer supply controller 402 com
mences the poWer supply to the sensor 403, and concurrently
sends to the connector terminal 405 a signal indicating that
poWer is being supplied to the sensor 403.
[0082] The fourth embodiment is designed such that, at
the time of eXposure for capturing an image With the silver
?lm camera 406, the poWer supply to the sensor 403 is
stopped at the time of optical measurement immediately
before the exposure. As such, even With an optical sensor
such as a photo-interrupter/photo-re?ector being used as the
sensor 403, since unnecessary light does not enter the inside
of the silver ?lm camera 406, a clear sample image can be
captured.
[0088]
The sensor poWer supply controller 503 is con
nected to a ?rst sWitch 509 and a second sWitch 510. The
?rst sWitch 509 and the second sWitch 510 are associated
With the sensor 504 and the sensor 505, respectively, and are
each formed of a sWitch, for eXample.
[0089] Upon a sWitch operation of the ?rst sWitch 509, a
signal is sent to the sensor poWer supply controller 503, and
the method of poWer supply to the sensor 504 is changed.
Similarly, upon a sWitch operation of the second sWitch 510,
a signal is sent to the sensor poWer supply controller 503,
and the method of poWer supply to the sensor 505 is
changed.
[0090] In the above state, When the ?rst sWitch 509 is set
to OFF, the sensor poWer supply controller 503 is enabled to
perform ON/OFF control for the poWer supply to the sensor
504. In speci?c, poWer is supplied to the sensor 504 only
When a signal at the time of driving of the revolver 506 is
sent to the sensor poWer supply controller 503 from the
revolver drive controller 502. When the sWitch 509 is set to
ON, the sensor poWer supply controller 503 is enabled to
alWays keep supplying poWer to the sensor 504.
[0091] A signal output from the second sWitch 510 is
similar to the signal from the ?rst sWitch 509. That is, When
the second sWitch 510 is set to OFF, the sensor poWer supply
controller 503 is enabled to perform ON/OFF control for the
poWer supply to the sensor 505. Speci?cally, poWer is
supplied to the sensor 505 only at the time of driving of the
stage 507. When the second sWitch 510 is set to ON, the
sensor poWer supply controller 503 alWays keeps supplying
poWer to the sensor 505.
[0092] Thus, according to the ?fth embodiment, the ?rst
sWitch 509 and the second sWitch 510 are provided. The ?rst
and second sWitches 509, 510 are used to select the sensors
504 and 505, respectively, to be supplied With poWer from
the sensor poWer supply controller 503. Thereby, the method
May 13, 2004
US 2004/0090670 A1
of power supply can manually be set and changed for each
of the sensors 504 and 505. This feature enhances the degree
pose that even a con?guration excluding some of the overall
of adaptability to microscope apparatuses including various
described herein to be solved and to enable the advantages
and effects described herein to be secured. The con?guration
in this case may be extracted by Way of one of the aspects
of the invention.
drive modes to be even higher. Further, the present embodi
ment enables optimal setting to be implemented to meet
operation positions and purposes desired by individual user.
Furthermore, poWer consumption in the apparatus can be
reduced.
[0093] While the invention has been described as above
With reference to the embodiments, the invention is not
limited to the embodiments. In the stage of practicing the
invention, various modi?cations may be made Without
departing the scope of the invention, as described hereunder.
[0094] In each embodiment, the poWer supply is set to
ON/ OFF, but the OFF state is not stopping the poWer supply
and may be an extremely small poWer supply.
[0095] The invention has been described With reference to
the embodiments each using the stage and the revolver as the
electrically drivers. HoWever, the invention may also be
adapted to con?gurations using other electrically drivers,
such as a vieW diaphragm an aperture diaphragm.
[0096] In addition, While the invention has been described
With reference to the microscopes of the vertical illumina
tion type, the invention may also be adapted to microscopes
of a transmitted illumination type.
[0097]
Further, While each of the embodiments have been
described With reference to the microscope apparatuses of an
erecting type, the invention may be adapted to microscope
apparatuses of an inverted type.
con?guration elements is sufficient to enable the problems
[0105] According to the individual embodiments dis
closed herein, poWer is supplied to the sensor for detecting
the state of the driver only When the driver is active.
Consequently, poWer consumption in the inactive state of the
driver can be reduced.
[0106] Appropriate poWer control can be implemented
also for the driver that is to be controlled by a manual
operation or electrical operation.
[0107]
Furthermore, the method of poWer supply can be
changed for the each sensor in the manner that the selecting
section selects at least one of the plurality of sensors to be
supplied With poWer from the poWer supply. As such, the
degree of adaptability also to microscope apparatuses
including various drive modes is high, and setting can be
implemented to meet operation positions and purposes
desired by individual users.
[0108] Moreover, With the imaging means and the poWer
supply being operated in association With each other, unnec
essary light from the sensor can be avoided during image
capture operation. This contributes also to improvement in
quality of captured images.
[0109] As described above, according to the embodiments
of the invention, microscope apparatuses capable of imple
menting reduction in poWer consumption can be provided.
[0098] The individual embodiments uses, for example, the
photo-interrupter/photo-re?ector as the sensor(s). HoWever,
[0110] From the individual embodiments, individual
an optical sensor(s) of a different type may be used. Fur
thermore, a magnetic sensor, static capacitance sensor, or
aspects of the invention as de?ned in the appended claims
can be extracted. The individual aspects of the invention
mechanical sensor may be used.
may either be independently adapted or be adapted in
[0099]
While the each embodiment uses a connector ter
minal as an output, it may use a TTL-level output or a
communication terminal such as a USB or RS-232 serial
port output or a parallel port output.
[0100] Although the embodiment using the silver ?lm
camera as the imaging means has been disclosed, a digital
camera may be used therefor.
[0101] Description has been provided referring to the
con?gurations in Which the drive controllers are built into
the microscope apparatus main body. HoWever, the con?gu
rations may be such that the drivers are controlled by
external devices.
[0102]
arbitrary combination.
[0111] A microscope apparatus according to the ?rst
aspect of the invention is characteriZed by comprising: a
driver mounted on a main body of the microscope apparatus;
a sensor Which detects a stopped state of the driver; a poWer
supply Which supplies poWer to the sensor; a drive controller
Which controls driving of the driver; and a controller Which
controls the poWer supply to the sensor from the poWer
supply in accordance With a drive control signal sent from
the drive controller to the driver. In the ?rst aspect, it is
preferable that a sWitch Which sWitches Whether to perform
or stop the poWer supply from the poWer supply to the sensor
is further provided.
While the each embodiment uses the sWitch as the
[0112] A microscope apparatus according to the second
sWitching means for changing the sensor poWer supply
method, commands externally issued by a personal com
puter or the like may be used for the sWitching means.
aspect of the invention is characteriZed by comprising: a ?rst
driver Which is mounted on a main body of the microscope
apparatus and Which is driven by a manual operation or an
electrical operation; a ?rst sensor Which detects a stopped
state of the ?rst driver; a second driver Which is mounted on
[0103]
While the each embodiment uses the sWitches for
the stage and revolver operations, commands externally
issued by a personal computer or the like may be used for the
sWitching means.
[0104] Further, the individual embodiments include inven
tive techniques in stages. Various aspects of the invention
may be extracted by arbitrarily combining the plurality of
con?guration elements disclosed herein. For example, sup
the main body of the microscope apparatus and Which is
driven only by an electrical operation; a second sensor
Which detects a stopped state of the second driver; a poWer
supply Which supplies poWer to the ?rst sensor and the
second sensor; a drive controller Which controls the driving
of the second driver; and a controller Which controls the
poWer supply to the second sensor from the poWer supply in
May 13, 2004
US 2004/0090670 A1
accordance With a drive control signal sent from the drive
controller to the second driver. In the second aspect, it is
preferable that a sWitch Which sWitches Whether to perform
or stop the poWer supply from the poWer supply to the ?rst
sensor, or at least one of: a ?rst sWitch Which sWitches
Whether to perform or stop the poWer supply from the poWer
supply to the ?rst sensor; and a second sWitch Which
sWitches Whether to perform or stop the poWer supply from
the poWer supply to the second sensor is further provided.
[0113] A microscope apparatus according to the third
aspect of the invention is characteriZed by comprising: a
driver mounted on a main body of the microscope apparatus;
a sensor Which detects a stopped state of the driver; a poWer
supply Which supplies poWer to the sensor; an imager Which
images an observation image acquired by the main body of
the microscope apparatus; a state detection section Which
detects an eXposure state of the imager; and a controller
Which stops the poWer supply to the sensor depending on the
eXposure state of the imager, Which is detected by the state
detection section.
[0114] A microscope apparatus according to the fourth
aspect of the invention is characteriZed by comprising: a
plurality of drivers mounted on a main body of the micro
scope apparatus; a plurality of sensors to individually detect
a ?rst sensor Which detects a stopped state of the ?rst
driver;
a second driver Which is mounted on the main body of the
microscope apparatus and Which is driven only by an
electrical operation;
a second sensor Which detects a stopped state of the
second driver;
a poWer supply Which supplies poWer to the ?rst sensor
and the second sensor;
a drive controller Which controls the driving of the second
driver; and
a controller Which controls the poWer supply to the second
sensor from the poWer supply in accordance With a
drive control signal sent from the drive controller to the
second driver.
4. A microscope apparatus according to claim 3, further
comprising a sWitch Which sWitches Whether to perform or
stop the poWer supply from the poWer supply to the ?rst
sensor.
5. A microscope apparatus according to claim 3, further
comprising at least one of:
a ?rst sWitch Which sWitches Whether to perform or stop
stopped states of said plurality of drivers; a poWer supply
the poWer supply from the poWer supply to the ?rst
Which supplies poWer to said plurality of sensors; and a
selecting section Which selects at least one of said plurality
of sensor to be supplied With poWer from the poWer supply.
sensor; and
[0115] Additional advantages and modi?cations Will
readily occur to those skilled in the art. Therefore, the
invention in its broader aspects is not limited to the speci?c
details and representative devices, and illustrated eXamples
shoWn and described herein. Accordingly, various modi?
cations may be made Without departing from the spirit or
scope of the general inventive concept as de?ned by the
appended claims and their equivalents.
What is claimed is:
1. A microscope apparatus comprising:
a driver mounted on a main body of the microscope
apparatus;
a second sWitch Which sWitches Whether to perform or
stop the poWer supply from the poWer supply to the
second sensor.
6. A microscope apparatus comprising:
a driver mounted on a main body of the microscope
apparatus;
a sensor Which detects a stopped state of the driver;
a poWer supply Which supplies poWer to the sensor;
an imager Which images an observation image acquired
by the main body of the microscope apparatus;
a state detection section Which detects an eXposure state
of the imager; and
a controller Which stops the poWer supply to the sensor
a sensor Which detects a stopped state of the driver;
a poWer supply Which supplies poWer to the sensor;
a drive controller Which controls driving of the driver; and
depending on the exposure state of the imager, Which is
detected by the state detection section.
7. A microscope apparatus comprising:
a plurality of drivers mounted on a main body of the
a controller Which controls the poWer supply to the sensor
microscope apparatus;
from the poWer supply in accordance With a drive
control signal sent from the drive controller to the
driver.
a plurality of sensors to individually detect stopped states
2. A microscope apparatus according to claim 1, further
a poWer supply Which supplies poWer to said plurality of
comprising a sWitch Which sWitches Whether to perform or
stop the poWer supply from the poWer supply to the sensor.
3. A microscope apparatus comprising:
a ?rst driver Which is mounted on a main body of the
microscope apparatus and Which is driven by a manual
operation or an electrical operation;
of said plurality of drivers;
sensors; and
a selecting section Which selects at least one of said
plurality of sensor to be supplied With poWer from the
poWer supply.
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