(19)
(11)EP 1 769 723 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
06.06.2012 Bulletin 2012/23

(21)Application number: 05748631.8

(22)Date of filing:  07.06.2005
(51)Int. Cl.: 
A61B 1/04  (2006.01)
H04N 5/232  (2006.01)
(86)International application number:
PCT/JP2005/010382
(87)International publication number:
WO 2005/122867 (29.12.2005 Gazette  2005/52)

(54)

ENDOSCOPE APPARATUS

ENDOSKOPVORRICHTUNG

APPAREIL ENDOSCOPIQUE


(84)Designated Contracting States:
DE

(30)Priority: 17.06.2004 JP 2004179693

(43)Date of publication of application:
04.04.2007 Bulletin 2007/14

(73)Proprietor: Olympus Corporation
Tokyo 151-0072 (JP)

(72)Inventors:
  • SUDO, Masaru
    Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 1510072 (JP)
  • KURODA, Hiroyuki
    Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 1510072 (JP)
  • SAITO, Katsuyuki
    Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 1510072 (JP)

(74)Representative: von Hellfeld, Axel 
Wuesthoff & Wuesthoff Patent- und Rechtsanwälte Schweigerstrasse 2
81541 München
81541 München (DE)


(56)References cited: : 
WO-A-2004/039250
JP-A- 2000 338 420
US-A- 5 817 014
US-A1- 2003 063 398
JP-A- 2000 010 023
JP-A- 2002 058 636
US-A1- 2001 016 680
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    Technical Field



    [0001] The present invention relates to an endoscope apparatus.

    Background Art



    [0002] The conventional endoscope apparatus has a zoom control unit for controlling the enlargement and reduction in size of an optical image that is provided separately from a CCU (Camera Control Unit), as disclosed, for example, by Patent Document 1 and Patent Document 2.

    Patent Document 1
    Japanese Patent Application Publication No. 9-322566

    Patent Document 2
    Japanese Patent Application Publication No. 8-336497



    [0003] US 2001/0016680 A1 relates to an endoscope apparatus using curvature of field, wherein the endoscope apparatus utilizes a phenomenon called "curvature of field" of a lens to satisfactorily bring a shape, into focus, of an object to be observed such as unevenness especially during enlargement in accordance with a shape of unevenness or the like of the object. For example, there is provided an objective lens group having two moveable lenses, and variable-power is performed and field curvature characteristics are changed by moving these moveable lenses. This change in the field curvature characteristics is performed by operating an image surface curving switch and driving the moveable lenses through the use of an actuator or the like. Also, information on differences in height on the image central part to the peripheral part is operated from the amount of field curvature changed by the objective lens group to display the information on differences in height on the monitor. Further, the image information on the divided areas are compared, and when the entire image is in focus, a static image is formed and the information on differences in height is displayed.

    [0004] US 5,817,014 relates to an electronic endoscope with zoom lens, wherein a control system is provided for the endoscope of the type having an objective lens, a moveable zoom lens, a moveable solid state imaging device for picking up the image formed by said objective lens and transferred by said zoom lens, means for generating a visual display of the image seen by the objective lens, and control means for moving the zoom lens and the imaging device so as to assure that for each position occupied by the zoom lens the imaging device is positioned so that its image-receiving surface is in the focal plane of the zoom lens. The system allows independent manual control of the zoom lens and imaging device by manually actuatable switches. A position-indicating video display system comprises means for generating first and second moveable markers indicative of the instantaneous positions of the zoom lens and the solid state imaging device along the optical axis, and additional limit markers indicative of the maximum and minimum limits of the travel paths of the zoom lens and the solid state imaging device.

    [0005] US 2003/0063398 A1 relates to an electronic endoscope eliminating influence of light distribution in optical zooming, wherein the endoscope has a scope that takes an image enlarged by driving a moveable lens of an optical zoom mechanism by a CCD and displays an image of an object to be observed, wherein a multiplier multiplies RGB color signals by a coefficient set in view of light distribution of illumination light depending on focusing distances of the moveable lens, thus eliminating uneven brightness resulting from varying light distribution depending on the focusing distances in enlargement photography. A red component cut filter for cutting a long wavelength side in a red band of the illumination light is provided in a light source unit to improve redness. Further, a coefficient for averaging a brightness signal for a predetermined number of pixels for each horizontal line is calculated, and this coefficient calculation may eliminate unevenness.

    [0006] WO 2004/039250 A1 refers to an endoscope viewing system having a powered optical coupler, wherein the endoscope viewing system includes a powered zoom coupler. The coupler is configured to attach the camera to a proximal end of an endoscope. The coupler includes a plurality of lenses that are positioned within a sleeve. The coupler includes a first motor and a second motor. Each of the first motor and the second motor move at least a portion of the plurality of lenses with respect to the sleeve. The coupler can optically focus and magnify the image applied to a camera. TRC system further comprises a control center so that it can digitally focus and magnify the image. Owing to this structure, surgeons can, with a single control unit optically and electrically process an image displayed on a monitor. Since the image can be both digitally and optically altered, wider zoom and focus ranges are possible.

    Disclosure of Invention



    [0007] The endoscope apparatus according to the present invention includes an endoscope unit having a lens unit; a photographing unit for photographing an optical image picked up through the lens unit, and a lens unit driving motor for driving the lens unit for realizing at least one of a zoom function and a focus function, and a control unit having an image processing circuit for processing an image signal output from the photographing unit, and for outputting the processed image signal to a monitor, in which at least one of the endoscope unit and the control unit comprises a motor driving circuit for controlling the lens unit driving motor, and a motor control circuit for outputting a control signal that controls the motor driving circuit by detecting a switch signal generated by operation of a zoom switch or a focus switch.

    [0008] In the endoscope apparatus according to the present invention the control unit may have the motor driving circuit and the motor control circuit.

    [0009] In the endoscope apparatus according to the present invention the endoscope unit may have the motor driving circuit and the motor control circuit.

    [0010] Further, in the above endoscope apparatus, the control unit may further comprise an operation unit, and a control circuit for providing, to the motor control circuit, a control signal for controlling the motor driving circuit on the basis of a switch signal generated by operation of the operation unit and a switch signal generated by operation of the zoom switch or the focus switch.

    [0011] Also, in the above endoscope apparatus, the endoscope unit further comprises a determination information notification unit for notifying determination information used for the determination of whether the endoscope unit has a zoom function and a focus function, and the control unit further comprises a control unit for controlling operation of the motor driving circuit and the motor control circuit on the basis of the determination information notified by the determination information notification unit.

    Brief Description of the Drawings



    [0012] 

    Figure 1 shows a configuration of an endoscope system to which the present invention can be applied;

    Figure 2 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of the endoscope apparatus illustrating the first embodiment of the present invention with a connected camera head that has a zoom function and a focus function;

    Figure 3 shows the waveform of a motor driving voltage (voltage driving);

    Figure 4 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of the endoscope apparatus illustrating the first embodiment of the present invention with a connected camera head that does not have a zoom function or a focus functions;

    Figure 5 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of the endoscope apparatus illustrating the second embodiment of the present invention with a connected camera head that has a zoom function and a focus function;

    Figure 6 shows the configuration of the motor control circuit 27 illustrating the second embodiment of the present invention;

    Figure 7 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of the endoscope apparatus illustrating the second embodiment of the present invention with a connected camera head that does not have a zoom function or a focus function;

    Figure 8 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of the endoscope apparatus illustrating a third embodiment of the present invention with a camera head connected that has a zoom function and a focus function;

    Figure 9 shows a configuration of a motor control circuit 27-1 illustrating the third embodiment of the present invention;

    Figures 10(A) through 10(D) show bit sequences and bit contents of serial data SD1 and SD2; and

    Figure 11 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of the endoscope apparatus illustrating the third embodiment of the present invention with a connected camera head that does not have a zoom function or a focus function.


    Best Modes for Carrying Out the Invention



    [0013] In the above conventional technique, the zoom control unit is provided separately from the CCU, and this has prevented the size of endoscope apparatuses from being reduced.

    [0014] An endoscope apparatus according to the present invention realizes size reduction by integrating a drive/control system used for zoom control and focus control into an existing circuit.

    [0015] Hereinafter, examples illustrating the present invention will be explained in detail by referring to the drawings.

    [0016] Figure 1 shows a configuration of an endoscope system to which the present invention can be applied. As an endoscope unit including a photographing device such as a CCD or the like, an optical endoscope 2 inserted into a coelum of a patient is connected to a camera head 3. As a control unit including a CPU and an image signal processing circuit, the camera head 3 is connected to a CCU (Camera Control Unit) 4. The camera head 3 is provided with a zoom switch (hereinafter, referred to as "zoom SW") 25 and a focus switch (hereinafter, referred to as "focus SW") 26. The CCU 4 is connected to a display monitor 5. A light source device 6 is connected through a light guide 7 to the optical endoscope 2. Note that a video scope in which the optical endoscope 2, the camera head 3, and the light guide 7 are integratedmaybe employed as a configuration of the present invention.

    [0017] Note also that a videoscope in which a camera head and a light guide are integrated together with a rigid endoscope, a flexible endoscope, or an optical endoscope may be employed as the optical endoscope 2.

    <Examples illustrating the First Embodiment>



    [0018] Figure 2 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of an endoscope apparatus illustrating the first embodiment of the present invention when a camera head having a zoom function and a focus function is connected. The camera head 3 includes a lens unit 10, a CCD (photographing device) 11, a TG (Timing Generator) 13, a zoom motor 21, a focus motor 22, a zoom position detection unit 23, a focus position detection unit 24, the zoom SW 25, the focus SW 26, and an ID storage unit 29.

    [0019] The lens unit 10 includes a zoom lens and a focus lens. Information used for discriminating types of camera heads (e.g., whether or not the camera unit has zoom and focus functions) is stored in the ID storage unit 29.

    [0020] The CCU 4 includes an image processing circuit 12, an SSG (Synchronization Signal Generator) 14, a clock oscillator 15, a divider circuit 16, a motor driving circuit 18, a CPU 17, a motor power circuit 19, and a control power circuit 20.

    [0021] When the endoscope apparatus begins operation, the camera head 3 is connected to the CCU 4 first. Then, the ID storage unit 29 in the camera head 3 sends an ID signal of the camera head 29 to the CPU 17 of the CCU 4.

    [0022] The CPU 17 determines whether the camera head 3 that is currently connected to the CCU 4 is a camera head for zooming/focusing on the basis of the ID signal. When it is determined that the camera head 3 that is currently connected to the CCU 4 is a camera head for zooming/focusing (i.e., the case shown in Fig. 2), the processes below are executed.

    [0023] An observation image of observation target tissue is picked up by an optical endoscope 1 inserted into the body of a patient and is photographed by the CCD 11. An image signal from the CCD 11 is input into the image processing circuit 12 and is subjected to a prescribed image process. The signal that has been subjected to the image process is sent to the display monitor 5 (Fig. 1) as a display signal and is displayed as a subject image 8.

    [0024] The clock oscillator 15 generates a clock signal CLK having a prescribed frequency. This clock signal CLK is sent to the SSG 14 where a horizontal synchronization signal (HSYNC), a vertical synchronization signal (VSYNC), and synchronization signals of other types are generated. The HSYNC and the VSYNC are sent to the timing generator (TG) 13 together with the CLK, the image processing circuit 12, and the CPU 17. The TG 13 generates a signal that determines the timing at which the CCD 11 photographs the image.

    [0025] When a user operates the zoom SW 25, a TELE or WIDE switch signal is sent to the CPU 17. The CPU 17 sends a control signal that causes the zoom lens to operate in accordance with the signal to the motor driving circuit 18. The motor driving circuit 18 operates in accordance with the signal obtained by dividing the CLK from the clock oscillator 15 by using the divider circuit 16. The motor driving circuit 18 generates signals ZA, ZB, ZA (inverted), and ZB (inverted) that drive the zoom motor 21 in accordance with the control signal from the CPU 17. Herein, ZA is a signal represented by phase A of a waveform of a zoom motor driving voltage, ZB is a signal represented by phase B (shifted from phase A by 1/4 cycle) of the waveform of the zoom motor driving voltage, ZA (inverted) is a signal obtained by inverting ZA, and ZB (inverted) is a signal obtained by inverting ZB. An example of phase A, phase B, phase A (inverted), and phase B (inverted) is shown in Fig. 3.

    [0026] The zoom motor 21 moves the zoom lens in the lens unit 10 in the TELE direction or in the WIDE direction on the basis of these signals. When the position of the zoom lens is detected by the zoom position detection unit 23 comprising a photo interrupter or the like, the position information is provided to the CPU 17 as a PIZ signal by the zoom position detection unit 23. Thereby, the CPU 17 can move the zoom lens to desired positions.

    [0027] When the user operates the focus SW 26, a switch signal of NEAR or FAR is sent to the CPU 17. The CPU 17 sends a control signal that causes the zoom lens to operate in accordance with the signal to the motor driving circuit 18. The motor driving circuit 18 generates signals FA, FB, FA (inverted), and FB (inverted) to drive the focus motor 22 in accordance with the control signal from the CPU 17. FA is a signal represented by phase A of a waveform of a focus motor driving voltage, FB is a signal represented by phase B (shifted from phase A by 1/4 cycle) of the waveform of the focus motor driving voltage, FA (inverted) is a signal obtained by inverting FA, and FB (inverted) is a signal obtained by inverting FB. An example of phase A, phase B, phase A (inverted), and phase B (inverted) is shown in Fig. 3.

    [0028] The focus motor 22 moves the focus lens in the lens unit 10 to both proximal and distal positions in accordance with the signals. When the position of the focus lens is detected by the focus position detection unit 24 that includes a photo interrupter or the like, the position information is provided to the CPU 17 as a PIF signal by the focus position detection unit 24. Thereby, the CPU 17 can move the focus lens to a focus position.

    [0029] When the camera head having zoom/focus functions is detected as above, the CPU 17 controls the control power circuit 20, the motor power circuit 19, and the motor driving circuit 18 in order to control the zoom/focus operations.

    [0030] Figure 4 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of an endoscope apparatus illustrating the first embodiment of the present invention with a camera head connected that does not have a zoom function or focus functions. Figure 2 explains the case in which the camera head has a zoom function and a focus function connected. In Fig. 4, the case is explained in which a camera head that does not have a zoom function or a focus function is connected.

    [0031] When the endoscope apparatus operates, the camera head 3 is first connected to the CCU 4. Then, the ID storage unit 29 in the camera head 3 sends an ID signal for the camera head 29 to the CPU 17 of the CCU 4.

    [0032] The CPU 17 determines whether or not the camera head 3 that is currently connected to the CCU 4 is a camera head for zooming/focusing on the basis of the ID signal. When it is determined that the camera head 3 that is currently connected to the CCU 4 is not a camera head for zooming/focusing (i.e., the case in Fig. 4), the CPU 17 does not send a control signal to the motor driving circuit 18. Also, the CPU 17 sends the control signal to the motor power circuit 19 and control power circuit 20 in order to shut down the power of the motor power circuit 19 and control power circuit 20. Thereby, wastes of power can be reduced.

    [0033] Signal lines of input signals (PIZ, PIF, TELE, WIDE, NEAR, and FAR) from the camera head 3 to the CCU 4 are fixed at a Low level (GND fix). In addition, there is no signal line of output signals (ZA, ZB, ZA (inverted), ZB (inverted), FA, FB, FA (inverted), and FB (inverted)) from the CCU 4 to the camera head 3 on the camera head side, and they are opened.

    [0034] According to the example discussed above, the drive/control system for the zoom control and the focus control is integrated into the CCU 4 so that the size of the entire electronic endoscope apparatus can be reduced. Also, because the drive/control system for the zoom control and the focus control is integrated into the CCU 4, the number of components operated by a user can be reduced so that the use of the electronic endoscope apparatus becomes more user-friendly. Further, there can be a reduction in the unnecessary consumption (waste) of electric power of the motor power circuit 19 and the control power circuit 20.

    <Examples illustrating the Second Embodiment>



    [0035] Figure 5 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of the endoscope apparatus illustrating the second embodiment of the present invention with a camera head connected that has a zoom function and a focus function is. In this example, the case is explained in which the motor driving circuit 18, a motor control circuit 27, and the divider circuit 16 explained in Fig. 2 are included in the camera head 3.

    [0036] When the endoscope apparatus operates, the camera head 3 is first connected to the CCU 4. Then, as with the example illustrating first embodiment, it is determined that the camera head that is currently connected has a zoom function and a focus function.

    [0037] Figure 6 shows a configuration of the motor control circuit 27 illustrating the second embodiment in which a motor driving circuit control unit 51 and an SW signal/position detection unit 52 are included. The SW signal/position detection unit 52 detects a switch signal generated by operation of the zoom SW 25 or the focus SW 26. Also, the SW signal/position detection unit 52 receives the PIZ signal from the zoom position detection unit 23 and the PIF signal from the focus position detection unit 24, and sends an instruction signal to the motor driving circuit control unit 51. Receiving the instruction signal from the SW signal/position detection unit 52, the motor driving circuit control unit 51 sends various control signals to the motor driving circuit 18.

    [0038] Figure 7 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of the endoscope apparatus illustrating the second embodiment of the present invention with a camera head connected that does not have a zoom function or a focus function. When the endoscope apparatus operates, the camera head 3 is connected to the CCU 4. Then, as with the example illustrating the first embodiment, it is determined that the camera head that is currently connected is a camera head that does not have a zoom function or a focus function. Then, the CPU 17 sends the control signal to the motor power circuit 19 and the control power circuit 20 in order to shut down the power of the motor power circuit 19 and the control power circuit 20. Thereby, there can be a reduction in the unnecessary consumption (waste) of power.

    [0039] According to the example illustrating the second embodiment, the drive/control system for the zoom control and the focus control is included in the camera head 3 so that the size of the apparatus can be reduced and the total number of connector pins (the number of signal lines) between the camera head 3 and the CCU 4 can be greatly reduced. The number of signal lines between the camera head 3 and the CCU 4 is actually two: one for the motor power circuit 19 and the other for the control power circuit 20. Also, the unnecessary consumption (waste) of power of the motor power circuit 19 and the control power circuit 20 can be reduced.

    <Example illustrating the Third Embodiment>



    [0040] Figure 8 is a block diagram that shows a configuration of the endoscope apparatus according to an example illustrating the third embodiment of the present invention with a camera head connected that has a zoom function and a focus function. When the endoscope apparatus operates, the camera head 3 is first connected to the CCU 4. Then, as with the example illustrating the first embodiment, the CPU 17 determines that the camera head 3 that is currently connected has a zoom function and a focus function on the basis of the information read from the ID information storage unit.

    [0041] In this example, as in the example illustrating the second embodiment, the motor driving circuit 18, the motor control circuit 27, and the divider circuit 16 are included in the camera head 3. Also, wiring is provided such that bidirectional serial communications can be conducted between a motor control circuit 27-1 in the camera head 3 and the CPU 17 of the CCU 4. Further, a keyboard 28 whose keys can act as switches for giving instructions for zoom and focus operations is connected to the cup 17.

    [0042] Figure 9 shows a configuration of the motor control circuit 27-1 in the example illustrating the third embodiment comprising the motor driving circuit control unit 51, the SW signal/position detection unit 52, a serial/parallel conversion unit 54, and a serial data generation unit 53.

    [0043] In the example illustrating the third embodiment, the CPU 17 receives not only the switch signal generated by operation of the zoom SW 25 or the focus SW 26, but also a switch signal generated by operation of the keyboard 28, such that the zoom operation and the focus operation can be controlled through the keyboard 28.

    [0044] Specifically, the switch signals (TELE and WIDE) generated by operation of the zoom SW 25 of the camera head 25, the switch signals (NEAR and FAR) generated by operation of the focus SW 26, the PIZ signal from the zoom position detection unit 23, and the PIF signal from the focus position detection unit 24 are input into the serial data generation unit 53 and also into the CPU 17 as serial data SD1. Figure 10(A) shows a bit sequence of the serial data SD1. Figure 10 (B) shows the contents of the bits.

    [0045] The CPU 17 of the CCU 4 generates a signal as serial data SD2 for controlling the motor driving circuit 18 on the basis of the data SD1 and the switch signal generated by operation of the keyboard 28. Figure 10(C) shows a bit sequence of the serial data SD2. Figure 10 (D) shows the contents of the bits.

    [0046] The serial/parallel conversion unit 54 receives the serial data SD2 from the CPU 17 and converts it into parallel signals of TELE1, WIDE1, NEAR1, and FAR1. The SW signal/position detection unit 52 detects these parallel signals and sends an instruction signal to the motor driving circuit control unit 51. Receiving the instruction signal from the SW signal/position detection unit 52, the motor driving circuit control unit 51 sends various control signals to the motor driving circuit 18.

    [0047] A superimposing circuit 30 is used for superimposing current zoom magnification information and a current focus position onto an endoscopy image. The superimposing circuit 30 includes a selector by which an image signal output from the image processing circuit 12 and a signal including the zoom magnification information and the current position output from the CPU 17 are switched to be output as a monitor signal.

    [0048] Figure 11 is a block diagram for showing a configuration of the endoscope apparatus according to the example illustrating the third embodiment of the present invention with a camera head connected that does not have a zoom function or a focus function. When the endoscope apparatus operates, the camera head 3 is first connected to the CCU 4. Then, as with the example illustrating the first embodiment, the CPU 17 determines that the camera head 3 that is currently connected is a camera head that does not have a zoom function or a focus function on the basis of the information read from the ID information storage unit. Next, the CPU 17 sends the control signal to the motor power circuit 19 and the control power circuit 20 in order to shut down the power of the motor power circuit 19 and control power circuit 20. Thereby, the unnecessary consumption (waste) of power can be reduced.

    [0049] According to the example illustrating the third embodiment, in addition to the effects of the example illustrating the second embodiment, it is possible to control the zoom operation and the focus operation through peripheral devices such as the keyboard 28 and the like. Further, the superimposing circuit 30 that is in sequence after the image processing circuit 12 can superimpose, onto the image signal from the image processing circuit 12, the current zoom magnification information and the current focus position obtained from the PIZ signal and the PIF signal sent to the CPU 17. The superimposing circuit 30 does this in order to display the image with its current zoommagnification information and the current focus position on the display monitor 5.

    [0050] Additionally, the ID information is used to determine the type of connected camera head in the examples illustrating the first through third embodiments. Note however that the scope of the present invention is not limited to these examples, but defined by the appended claims, and the type of camera head may, for example, be determined by detecting the value of resistance that is set for each type of camera head.

    [0051] As described above, according to the present invention, the drive/control system for the control of the zoom operation and the focus operation is integrated into an existing circuit; accordingly, the size of the endoscope apparatus can be reduced.


    Claims

    1. An endoscope apparatus including:

    an endoscope unit (2) having:

    a lens unit (10);

    a photographing unit (11) for photographing an optical image picked up through the lens unit (10); and

    a lens unit driving motor (21, 22) for driving the lens unit (10) for realizing at least one of a zoom function and a focus function; and

    a control unit (4) having:

    an image processing circuit (12) for processing an image signal output from the photographing unit (11), and for outputting the processed image signal to a monitor (5), wherein:

    at least one of the endoscope unit (2) and the control unit (4) comprises:

    a motor driving circuit (18) for controlling the lens unit driving motor (21, 22); and

    a motor control circuit (17, 27, 27-1) for outputting a control signal that controls the motor driving circuit (18) by detecting a switch signal generated by operation of a zoom switch (25) or a focus switch (26);

    wherein the endoscope unit (2) further comprises:

    a determination information notification unit (29) for notifying determination information used for the determination of whether or not the endoscope unit (2) has a zoom function and a focus function; and

    the control unit (4) further comprises:

    a further control unit for controlling the operation of the motor driving circuit (18) and the motor control circuit (17, 27, 17-1) on the basis of the determination information notified by the determination information notification unit (29).


     
    2. The endoscope apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the control unit comprises:

    the motor driving circuit (18); and

    the motor control circuit (27).


     
    3. The endoscope apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the endoscope unit comprises:

    the motor driving circuit (18); and

    the motor control circuit (27).


     
    4. The endoscope apparatus according to claim 3, wherein:

    the control unit (4) further comprises:

    an operation unit; and

    a control circuit for providing, to the motor control circuit (17, 27, 17-1), a control signal for controlling the motor driving circuit (18) on the basis of a switch signal generated by operation of the operation unit and a switch signal generated by operation of the zoom switch (25) or the focus switch (26).


     


    Ansprüche

    1. Endoskopvorrichtung mit
    einer Endoskopeinheit (3), die enthält:

    eine Linseneinheit (10);

    eine Fotografiereinheit (11) zum Fotografieren eines optischen Bildes, das von der Linseneinheit (10) aufgenommen wird; und

    einen Antriebsmotor (21, 22) für die Linseneinheit zum Antreiben der Linseneinheit (10), um mindestens entweder eine Zoom-Funktion oder eine

    Scharfeinstellungsfunktion auszuführen; und

    eine Steuereinheit (4) mit:

    einer Bildverarbeitungsschaltung (12) zum Verarbeiten eines Bildsignals, das von der Fotografiereinheit (11) ausgegeben wird, und zum Ausgeben des verarbeiteten Bildsignals an einen Monitor (5), wobei:

    mindestens entweder die Endoskopeinheit (2) oder die Steuereinheit (4) aufweist:

    eine Motortreiberschaltung (18) zum Steuern des Antriebsmotors (21, 22) für die Linseneinheit; und

    eine Motorsteuerschaltung (17, 27, 27-1) zum Ausgeben eines Steuersignals, das die Motortreiberschaltung (18) steuert, indem ein Schaltersignal erfasst wird, das durch die Betätigung eines Zoom-Schalters (25) oder eines Scharfeinstellungsschalters (26) erzeugt wird;

    wobei die Endoskopeinheit (2) ferner aufweist:

    eine Bestimmungsinformations-Meldeeinheit (29) zum Melden von Bestimmungsinformationen, die zur Bestimmung dienen, ob die Endoskopeinheit (2) eine Zoom-Funktion und eine Scharfeinstellungsfunktion hat oder nicht; und

    die Steuereinheit (49) ferner aufweist:

    eine weitere Steuereinheit zum Steuern des Betriebs der Motortreiberschaltung (18) und der Motorsteuerschaltung (17, 27, 27-1) auf Basis der Bestimmungsinformationen, die von der Bestimmungsinformations-Meldeeinheit (29) gemeldet werden.


     
    2. Endoskopvorrichtung nach Anspruch 1, wobei die Steuereinheit aufweist:

    die Motortreiberschaltung (18); und

    die Motorsteuerschaltung (27).


     
    3. Endoskopvorrichtung nach Anspruch 1, wobei die Endoskopvorrichtung aufweist:

    die Motortreiberschaltung (18); und

    die Motorsteuerschaltung (27).


     
    4. Endoskopvorrichtung nach Anspruch 3, wobei die Steuereinheit (4) ferner aufweist:

    eine Betätigungseinheit; und

    eine Steuerschaltung, um der Motorsteuerschaltung (17, 27, 27-1) ein Steuersignal zum Steuern der Motortreiberschaltung (18) auf Basis eines Schaltersignals, das durch die Betätigung der Betätigungseinheit erzeugt wird, und eines Schaltersignals,

    das durch die Betätigung des Zoom-Schalters (25) oder des Scharfeinstellungsschalters (26) erzeugt wird, bereitzustellen.


     


    Revendications

    1. Appareil endoscopique comprenant :

    une unité d'endoscope (2) comportant :

    une unité d'objectif (10) ;

    une unité de photographie (11) destinée à photographier une image optique capturée par l'intermédiaire de l'unité d'objectif (10) ; et

    un moteur d'entraînement de l'unité d'objectif (21, 22) destiné à entraîner l'unité d'objectif (10) pour réaliser au moins l'une parmi une fonction de zoom et une fonction de mise au point ; et

    une unité de commande (4) comportant :

    un circuit de traitement d'images (12) destiné à traiter un signal d'image délivré en sortie depuis l'unité de photographie (11), et destiné à délivrer en sortie le signal d'image traité vers un moniteur (5), dans lequel :

    au moins l'une parmi l'unité d'endoscope (2) et l'unité de commande (4) comprend :

    un circuit d'entraînement de moteur (18) destiné à commander le moteur d'entraînement de l'unité d'objectif (21, 22) ; et

    un circuit de commande de moteur (17, 27, 27-1) destiné à délivrer en sortie un signal de commande qui commande le circuit d'entraînement du moteur (18) en détectant un signal de commutation généré par l'actionnement d'un commutateur de zoom (25) ou d'un commutateur de mise au point (26) ;

    dans lequel l'unité d'endoscope (2) comprend en outre :

    une unité de notification d'informations de détermination (29) destinée à notifier des informations de détermination utilisées pour déterminer si oui ou non l'unité d'endoscope (2) possède une fonction de zoom et une fonction de mise au point ; et

    l'unité de commande (4) comprend en outre :

    une unité de commande supplémentaire destinée à commander le fonctionnement du circuit d'entraînement de moteur (18) et le circuit de commande de moteur (17, 27, 17-1) sur la base des informations de détermination notifiées par l'unité de notification d'informations de détermination (29).


     
    2. Appareil endoscopique selon la revendication 1, dans lequel l'unité de commande comprend :

    le circuit d'entraînement de moteur (18) ; et

    le circuit de commande de moteur (27).


     
    3. Appareil endoscopique selon la revendication 1, dans lequel l'unité d'endoscope comprend
    le circuit d'entraînement de moteur (18) ; et
    le circuit de commande de moteur (27).
     
    4. Appareil d'endoscope selon la revendication 3, dans lequel :

    l'unité de commande (4) comprend en outre :

    une unité opérationnelle ; et

    un circuit de commande destiné à délivrer, vers le circuit de commande de moteur (17, 27, 17-1), un signal de commande destiné à commander le circuit d'entraînement de moteur (18) sur la base d'un signal de commutation généré par l'actionnement de l'unité opérationnelle et d'un signal de commutation généré par l'actionnement du commutateur de zoom (25) ou du commutateur de mise au point (26).


     




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    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



    This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

    Patent documents cited in the description