Several years ago a Connecticut group approached me to build a device to quantify all aspects of the image and light quality of any flexible or rigid endoscope. I was already working on a similar scale to measure these qualities. The customer showed me the advantages of using Lab View software so we worked together.
We were both using Optic rails to hold the distal tip while moving several test patterns across the lens; US 1942 test pattern, depth of field wedge, color test pattern, and a light meter .Lab View eliminated the subjectivity of the human eye and gave a consistent reading each and every time. It could also tell areas of dead fibers and improper lens configuration causing ‘spot light’ or ‘flood light’ dispersion. I took the software and integrated it into a computer which could activate servos.
To automatically move the test targets into place and take the readings to develop a through understanding of the endoscope. It gave light output measurements of the light guide and image retrieval before and after repair work. This was useful in countering claims by customers of degradation due to repairs. It quantified improved image clarity due to work performed. I used the device with great success.
Olympus heard about the device and requested a demonstration. I attended the demo which seemed t really impress the attendees. Unfortunately the Connecticut group didn’t know how to properly market the apparatus and all their business plans fell apart. They should of paid my Invoices. I used apparatus at Fiber Tech. It would of been counter productive to sell the device to competing service companies. As far as I know I possess the last working model operating on a 385 computer.
The Endotester measured light related items and image related items.
Light related tests:
Light input to light guide
Light output from light guide
Light output through endoscope distal end
Light input transferred to image guide
Light output transferred through image guide
Light input to CCD chip
Image related tests:
US1942 test target
Depth of field target
Image and light (fall off)
All of these measurements can be analyzed in detail and printed in a report with vivid colors. It has been 18 years and still has no equal.
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