News Column

Patent Issued for Holographically Illuminated Imaging Devices

July 15, 2014



By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Journal of Technology -- From Alexandria, Virginia, VerticalNews journalists report that a patent by the inventors Yang, Changhuei (Pasadena, CA); Wu, Jigang (Irvine, CA); Pang, Shuo (Pasadena, CA), filed on October 13, 2010, was published online on July 1, 2014.

The patent's assignee for patent number 8767216 is California Institute of Technology (Pasadena, CA).

News editors obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Embodiments of the present invention generally relate to sensing and imaging devices. More specifically, certain embodiments relate to holographically illuminated imaging devices used in microscopy and photography.

"Microscopes and other optical microscopy devices are used extensively in modern biomedicine and bioscience. Typically, conventional microscopes include an objective lens, a platform for supporting a specimen, and an eyepiece containing lenses for focusing images. These conventional microscope designs have bulky optics, and have proven to be expensive and difficult to miniaturize. Further, since high resolution objective lenses have a limited field of view, the specimen stage must be moved to increase the scope of the view, which can be time-consuming.

"A conventional confocal laser scanning microscope uses a laser beam to provide light which is focused by an objective lens into a small focal volume at the specimen. Scattered and reflected laser light as well as any fluorescence light from the illuminated spot on the specimen is collected by the objective lens. The collected light is transmitted to a beam splitter which separates out the light of interest and transmits it to a detection apparatus. As the laser scans, an image can be obtained of the specimen. This technique can be time-consuming."

As a supplement to the background information on this patent, VerticalNews correspondents also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "Embodiments of the present invention relate to holographic illumination in sensing and imaging devices. More specifically, certain embodiments relate to holographically illuminated imaging devices (HIIDs) having a holographic element to transform a planar wavefront from an illumination beam into at least one focal array of light spots in a fluid channel. A fluid flow moves an object through the light spots in the fluid channel. The object alters the light (e.g., fluorophores absorb light and emit light of a different light property). A light detector detects the altered light (e.g., emissions) and generates time varying data which can be used to produce an image of the object. One embodiment includes an HIID with a plurality of focal arrays along the fluid channel at different depths, forming a three-dimensional focal array. This configuration can be used to generate sectional images or three-dimensional images of the object moving through the fluid channel.

"One embodiment is directed to a HIID comprising a holographic element configured to transform an illumination beam from an illumination source into a focal array of light spots. The HIID further comprises a scanning mechanism configured to move an object across one or more light spots in the focal array of light spots. The HIID further comprises a light detector configured to detect light associated with the focal array of light spots, and generate light data associated with the received light.

"Another embodiment is directed to a HIID comprising a body defining a fluid channel. The HIID further comprises a holographic element configured to transform an illumination beam from an illumination source into a focal array of light spots. The HIID further comprises a beam splitter configured to reflect the focal array of light spots into the fluid channel wherein a flow in the channel moves an object across one or more light spots in the focal array of light spots. The beam splitter is further configured to transmit light altered by the object. The HIID further comprises a light detector configured to detect light associated with the focal array of light spots, and generate light data associated with the received light.

"Another embodiment is directed to a HIID comprising a holographic element configured to transform an illumination beam into a plurality of focal arrays of light spots at different focal planes. The HIID further comprises a scanning mechanism configured to move an object across one or more light spots in the plurality of focal arrays of light spots. The HIID further comprises a light detector configured to receive light associated with the plurality of focal arrays of light spots, and generate light data associated with the received light.

"Another embodiment is directed to a system comprising a HIID and a processor. The HIID includes a holographic element configured to transform an illumination beam from an illumination source into a focal array of light spots. The HIID also includes a scanning mechanism configured to move an object across one or more light spots in the focal array of light spots. The HIID also includes a light detector configured to detect light associated with the focal array of light spots, and generate light data associated with the received light. The HIID also includes a processor in communication with the light detector. The processor is configured to receive a signal with light data and generate an image of the object based on the light data."

For additional information on this patent, see: Yang, Changhuei; Wu, Jigang; Pang, Shuo. Holographically Illuminated Imaging Devices. U.S. Patent Number 8767216, filed October 13, 2010, and published online on July 1, 2014. Patent URL: http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.htm&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=8767216.PN.&OS=PN/8767216RS=PN/8767216

Keywords for this news article include: California Institute of Technology.

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Source: Journal of Technology


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