US 2815697 A
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550-321 SR I 1 Dec. 10, 1957 A. E. SAUNDERS-SINGER 2,815,697
MICROSCOPE MANIPULATORS OR DISSECTION MANIPULATORS Filed May 28, 1951 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Attorneys.
D 10 A. E. SAUNDERS-SINGER MICROSCOPE MANIPULATORS OR DISSECTION MANIPULATORS Filed May 28, 195.1 Y s Sheets-Sheet 2 I nuentorh A ttorneya.
Dec. 10, 1957 E. SAUNDERS-SINGER 2,815,697
MICROSCOPE MANIPULATORS 0R mssscnou MANIPULATORS Filed May 28, 1951 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 MMMM' Jaw-m, MLM
ttomey United States Patent MICROSCOPE MANIPULATORS OR DISSECTION MANIPULATORS This invention relates to microscope manipulators, or dissection manipulators, i. e. a mechanism by which a stylus or other dissection or similar instrument is constrained to follow to a reduced scale the path traced by the hand of the opera tor;
Pantographs are already known based on the parallelogram. These are used by draughtsmen for reducing the scale when it is not desirable ot use photographic means. They cause a writing instrument to follow the operators hand on a reduced scale on the plane surface such as paper but such instruments as known are not per se suitable to give three-directional movement in space.
It is the object of this invention to provide a manipulator which will follow the movement of the operators hand on a reduced scale, and preferably adapted to follow the manual movements in three dimensions in space or in any combination of the three directions.
With this end in view the invention consists in a microscope-or dissection-manipulator comprising a pantograph linkage serving as a motion-reducing connection between a finger grip or like manually-operable element and a support for the article being manipulated.
This invention further consists in a microscope-stylus or tool-manipulator comprising a cuboidal framework formed of a finger-grip or like manually operable element, a support for the article being manipulated, and a plurality of pantograph linkages serving as motionreducing connecting means between the manually-operable element and the support.
It will be found that if a cubic frame-work is built up with these characteristics the principle of the pantograph will be operative in whatever direction the operator moves his hand and the movement of the operators hand in any of the three directions or in any combination thereof, will be transmitted on a reduced scale to the stylus.
The invention will be clearly understood from the following description of forms (given, however, merely by way of example) which it may assume, and this description will be more readily followed by reference to the accompanying drawings wherein:
Figure 1 represents schematically one form of manipulator according to the invention, seen in perspective;
Figure 2 is a geometric diagram of the manipulator shown in Figure 1, in side view;
Figure 3 represents in perspective the main elements of an alternative form of manipulator according to the invention seen in perspective;
Figure 4 is a geometric diagram of the manipulator shown in Figure 3 as seen from one side;
Figure 5 is a perspective view of a complete manipulator on its support, according to the invention; and
Figures 68 represent details of the apparatus shown in Figure 5, Figure 6 representing a plan view along the line VI-VI of Figure 7, which is a front view of the manipulator support shown in Figure 5.
in carrying the invention into effect in one convenient manner, as shown in Figures 1 and 2 of the accompanying drawings, a microscope-or dissection-manipulator may be built up by use of wires and metal strips such as of Phosphor bronze or brass. The joints in this simple example are rigid and the bending of the wires and strips under their own elastic yielding gives the elfect of limited movement about the joints. As shown this simplest form of apparatus comprises a substantially regular cube one side of which is built up from a rigid rod 1 and three brass flexible strips 2, 3, 4. These strips are as shown in the plane of the side of the cube and thus will not readily admit of movement in that plane but will allow bending movement of the strips at right angles thereto. The rod 1 is rigid in all directions. This side of the cube will for the purpose of description be looked upon as the front of the cube. The remaining surfaces will be the top, the base, the back and the right and left hand sides (being the right and left hand sides as viewed by the operator facing the front).
The base is made up of the rod 1 hereinbefore mentioned and three similar brass strips 5, 6, 7 lying in the plane of the base. The back comprises a rigid rod 8 (similar to the rod 1 forming one side of the front), the strip 6 which forms part of the base, and flexible wires 9, 10 on each side connecting the rod 8 to each end of the strip 6.
The right and left hand sides are identical. Each comprises a strip 2 or 4, forming part of the front, and a strip 5 or 7 forming part of the base. The remaining two elements of each side are of flexible wire and comprise a wire 9 or 10 forming part of the back, and a top wire 11 or 12. The top is clearly automatically formed when the other sides of the cube have been formed and the top will thus comprise a strip 3 forming part of the front, a rod 8 forming part of the back and two wires 11, 12 which each form part of one side.
Each of the sides has an inner reduction frame of wires. This inner reduction frame comprises two wires 13, 14 or 15, 16 one running from the front to the back, parallel to the top edge of the side and the other running from the top to the bottom parallel to the back edge of the side. Each pair of reduction wires cross internally of the side of the cube and thus form a smaller square inside the square formed by the side of the cube.
Bending of the links (which is possible owing to the elasticity of the wires and strips) transforms the square sides of the cube into parallelograms.
The two points of intersection 17, 18 of the reduction wires on the sides form a resting point upon which may. be rested or fixed a rod, stylus or similar pointer 19, carrying a sample to be viewed under a microscope,- or a dissecting instrument, or the like.
In use the rod 8 forming part of the back is either clamped on to a rigid base or possibly held by the operators left hand. It may be extended as shown to allow of a firmer grip. The rod 1 forming part of the front is the operating rod or finger grip and is held by the operators right hand and moved through the desired path. Each movement of the operating rod 1 is faithfully transferred to the stylus or the like through the squares and parallelograms formed by the links of the cube and reduction of movement will be in the same ratio as the lengths of the sides of the smaller square to the lengths of the sides of the larger square forming the sides of the cube. Movement can be in any direction or in any combination of directions.
Since the joints between the sides of the squares and parallelograms are not pivots but bend owing to distortion of the sides some inaccuracy of movement is bound to occur but in practice it is found that the error is very slight and the manipulator when made in this way has the merit of simplicity. The device, moreover, has a steadying effect on the hand of the operator and reduces quiver or shaking.
A rather more complicated example of the invention which will give greater linear and angular movement than the example above described may be built up with flexible joints and rigid links. In this example, while the essential characteristics of a cubic framework are retained the sides of the cube are in some cases extended and in some cases deleted there being sufficient links provided in all cases to give the characteristics of the parallelogram from which the essential cube is built up.
One embodiment of this form of the invention is shown in Figures 3 and 4 of the drawings herewith and comprises two substantially identical sides built up from strips of Phosphor bronze. Each side comprises two parallel strips 20, 21 or 22, 23 linked by two further parallel strips 24, 25 or 26, 27 after the manner of a parallel ruler. The joints between the various links may be formed by any suitable form of pivot and as will appear hereinafter may comprise balls working in cones and held by spring pressure in position or' by any other convenient means. Some of the links, e. g. 21, 24 and 23, 26 are preferably extended as shown and counter-weights 28 are placed on the ends so that when the device is used as hereinafter described the weights 28 hold the various parts in position and nullify to a large degree the tendency of gravity to upset any given setting of the mechanism.
One of the links 25 or 27 of each side parallelogram is extended and a cross bar 1 joins these two parallel extensions. Such cross bar 1 serves as the operating rod and is intended to be held by the operators right hand. Another link of each side parallelogram e. g. 21 or 23 (not being one of the links which are parallel to those carrying the operating rod 1) is similarly extended and the two are interconnected by a clamping cross-piece 8 to which is fixed a boss or other element 29 suitable for clamping to a rigid stand or to be held rigidly by the operators left hand.
A third reduction cross-piece 30 is provided linking the two side parallelograms e. g. sides 20 and 22 together and such cross bar 30 will normally be parallel to the operating rod and to the clamping cross-piece 8.
It will now be seen that in this form of the invention as so far described, two pantographs have been provided linked by three cross bars 1, 8, 30. If the joints between the sides of each parallelogram allow only distortion of the parallelogram in its own plane the cross-piece 30 (supporting a sample or instrument for microscope use) can be moved up and down and/or fore and aft, at a reduced rate, by manipulation of the operating rod 1. If, as preferred, the parallelogram joints allow universal relative movement of the sides of the parallelograms, the three transverse rods 1, 8, 30 with the strips between which they extend form a third pantograph linkage distortable in a transverse sense, and allowing the crosspiece 30 to follow movement of the finger grip 1, at a reduced rate, in three dimensions.
The reduction cross-piece 30 may as previously described be extended to one side as desired and is provided with a stylus or other attachment 19.
In use the manipulator is clamped to a stand e. g. by boss 29 (or possibly held by the operators left hand), the operator holds the operating rod 1 and moves it in the directions desired, thus the movement of the operators hand being faithfully transmitted without distortion but on a reduced scale to the stylus attachment 19 The degree of reduction of movement may be varied by varying the length of the strip between the stylus attachment 19 and the side of the manipulator. Any 1ncreas e in this length serves to reduce the reduction ratio. This length should therefore preferably be kept short if a high reduction ratio is desired. Further variation of ratio of movement can be effected by varying the relative lengths of the limbs of the pantograph linkages.
In either of the forms of the invention so far described above means may be provided allowing an operator, by manipulation of the finger-grip or operating rod 1, to rotate the stylus attachment 19, and thereby rotate the sample or instrument held by the outer end thereof in the microscope field. One example of means for carrying out this operation according to the invention is illustrated in Figures 3 and 4 of the drawings herewith, and in principle comprises a crank connection between the operating rod 1 and the stylus attachment 19 (both of which are mounted to be rotatable, each about its own axis), so that rotation of the rod 1 is transmitted to, and causes, rotation of the stylus attachment 19.
Each of the rotatable rods 1, 19 may be provided with a separately formed crank and crank pin or each may be more simply itself bent into the form of a crank 31, 32 respectively, as shown the crank terminating in a joint and preferably ball joint. The ends of these cranks 31, 32 are interconnected by any suitable link or coupling whereby rotation of one rod, e. g. 1, is transmitted to the other rod 19. As shown such a linkage may comprisea link 33 jointed at one end to crank 31, and at the other end to a disc or plate 34, and another link 35, jointed at one end to crank 32 and at the other end to a difierent point of the disc or plate 34 which is supported upon a rotatable cross-rod 36 extending between and jointed in the pantograph sides of the manipulator. It will be clear that finger rotation of the operating rod 1 is effective to rotate the rod 30 and stylus attachment 19 thereon. If desired the cranks may be of different lengths to provide a reduction ratio in the rate of movement of rod 30 relative to that of rod 1. If desired the crank lengths may be variable to modify this reduction ratio.
In place of these crank links there may, if desired, be employed gearing, or Bowden cable connections.
From the above description it will be seen that a manipulator according to the form of the invention shown in Figures 3 and 4 may comprise four cross bars' or rods interconnecting the two deformable parallelograms or their extensions. First, there is the rotatable operating rod 1, secondly there is the idle reduction cross-piece 36, thirdly there is the clamping cross-piece 8 which is not rotated in use, and fourthly there is the stylus attachment rod 30 which is rotated by the operating rod, through the idle reduction cross-piece, 36.
The connecting links e. g. 33, 35 which transmit rotation may be spring Phosphor-bronze strips. Preferably they are interconnected by universal joints, e. g. by being inwardly pressed on to balls at their ends or other convenient constructions. Single or multiple throw cranks may be used.
It will be noted that in the preferred construction of this form of the invention using universal joints, e. g. ball joints, three-dimensional distortion of the device is possible, and is not affected by the provision of the crank couplings 33, 34, 35 (which are also preferably universally jointed). It is for this purpose that universal joints are preferred to the more obvious pulley wheels with catgut connection running over them, which, however, may be employed where the joints between the pantograph limbs are such as to prohibit transverse deformation of the cubic structure.
A completed form of the invention mounted on a suitable stand is illustrated in Figures 5-8 inclusive of the accompanying drawings and will now be described. In this construction the linkages are substantially the same as those shown in Figure 3 (and the same references are employed for like elements), but it will be noted that in order to accommodate ball joints most of the links are formed each of two parts held together by small screws or bolts. Thus each of the links 24, 25, 26, 27, 33 and 35 comprises two strips held together by bolts 37 and accommodating balls located between them by apertures in the strips, these balls being attached to and forming bearings for the cross-rods 1, 8, 30 and 36, and for the ends of pins projecting from the plate 34. The ends of links 20, 21, 22 and 23 are also apertured and make joint engagement with the balls located in the upper and lower links 24, 25, 26 and 27. In order to accommodate the ball joints of the stylus attachment rod 30 each of links 20 and 22 is fitted with a side bracket 38 (Figure 8) held thereon by small bolts 37. As shown the rod 1 is fitted with a rigidly secured cylindrical finger-grip having an external milled surface to facilitate operation.
The device described above may be detachably secured to a stand comprising a heavy base 39 with an upstanding cylindrical column 40 on which is mounted a movable support or slide formed of two plates 41, 42 held together and against opposite sides of the column 40 by bolts 43. See Figs. 6 and 7. On one side of the column the upper and lower bolts are fitted internally with coned collars which engage against the cylindrical surface of the column and serve both to provide a friction grip against the surface of the column and also to space the plates 41, 42 correctly. On the opposite side of the column the bolts are fitted with distance sleeves 44 which maintain the plates 41, 42 parallel to one another. Between the plates 41, 42 extends a shaft 45 carrying a slotted cylinder 46 adapted to make frictional engagement with a cylindrical rib 47 secured to the column 40, and this shaft 45 projecting through one plate is provided with a cylindrical head 48 enabling it to be rotated by finger manipulation. Alternatively the cylinder 46 may be toothed and engage with a toothed rack in place of the rib 47. By rotating the head 48 the plate assembly can be raised and lowered as desired on the column 40.
Means are provided to attach the manipulator device above described to the plate assembly 41, 42. Conveniently for this purpose the opposite side edges of one of the plates 42 are turned and cut away to form steps 49. Above and midway between these steps a screw 50 projects from the plate and has screwed thereon a milled head 51 coned on its inner surface at 52. The boss 29 of the manipulator is rested across the steps 49 and beneath the milled head 51. When the latter is screwed home the coned inner surface engages on the boss 29 and holds it firmly on the steps 49 and against the plate 42. A cylindrical abutment 53 may be secured to the plate 42 above the milled head 51 so that the conical surface of the head 51 engages thereon when screwed tight against the boss 29, and the load of the manipulator thus borne to a large extent by the abutment 53.
In order to secure a sample or microscope tool to the rod 30 there may be provided connecting or clamping means at the outer end thereof. Such means may, as shown, comprise two discs 54 secured to the rod 30 in spaced relationship andhaving between them a loose metal loop or strap 55 carrying a finger-operable screw 56 which beafs against a bridge piece extending between the upper surfaces of the discs 54. Notches 57 are provided in the edges of the discs 54 opposite to the bridge piece. The shaft of a tool or simple-support is inserted in the loop 55 and extends between the notches 57. When the loop 55 is drawn tight by the screw 56 the tool or support is held firmly attached to the rod 30.
It will be noted that the tool or sample holder fitted to the rod 30 in the manner described above is eccentric of the rotational axis of the rod 30, which may be undesirable when the device is in use. The holder may therefore be adapted to allow centering of the tool or stylus by any of the following means (not illustrated):
(a) The holder, comprising the disc assembly 54, may be attached to the rod 30 by a simple ball and socket joint allowing the attached tool or stylus to be tilted in relation to the axis of rod 30 until its tip is in alignment with the rotational axis.
(b) The end of rod 30 may be cranked or offset, and the holder fitted thereto by a ball joint. This reduces the extent of angular tilt required between the tool or stylus and the axis of rod 30 in order to align its tip with the cranked or offset end to rod 30, there may be attached thereto a false plate, in place of the aforesaid ball joint, having lugs carrying two screws mutually perpendicular and both perpendicular to the rod axis. The tool or stylus isheld against this plate by a ball and springloaded washer, and may be adjusted axially in relation to the rod 30, until its tip is in alignment with the rotational axls.
(c) Three or four toolor stylus-holders may be fitted in such a manner that each can be brought into line after centering in one or other of the ways indicated above, and after use can be moved, with its tool or stylus out of the way allowing another tool or stylus, already centered on the same axis to be moved into use. For this purpose there may be employed a tail-stock turret attachment comprising, on the axis of the tail, a plate inclined at an angle, and on this plate is rotatably mounted a multiple tool holder, embodying supporting jaws on an axis located so that each tool or stylus is brought into, and held in, alignment with the rotational axis when in use. Preferably the arrangement is such that when the tools or styli are moved out of operative position they are carried sideways and vertically to clear the optical parts of the microscope with which they are in use. The multiple tool holder may be locked into position by any convenient means, one suitable arrangement comprising a ball and a coned hole, the cone being preferably trihedral. The faces of the supporting plate and the mul' tiple-tool holder carrying plate may be maintained out of surface contact by three balls, one of which may be the ball which locates the aforesaid trihedral conical aperture.
In all the constructions described above it is desirable that each joint should be spring pressed 50 as to avoid back lash.
It will be seen that in the examples heretofore described in this specification, vertical movement (as also horizontal or other movement) of the tool or stylus can be obtained by the operator in two alternative ways. The first method is to move the operating rod 1 wholly up and down, keeping its angle relative to the stylus or reduction crosspiece constant. The reduction of the movement of the operating rod is in this case fixed by the general construction of the apparatus and is not dependent on the length of the stylus rod extension. The second method is to move the operating rod 1 angularly about an axis perpendicular to its own length so that the angle between the operating rod and the stylus or reduction cross-piece is varied. This will similarly produce variations of the angle or tilt of the stylus or reduction crosspiece and will produce reduced vertical movement of the tip of the stylus but the reduction in this case will be dependent partly on the general construction of the apparatus and partly on the length of the extension by which the stylus attachment is held away from the side of the manipulator. This possibility of obtaining angular movement or tilting is of great importance because it enables the operator to reproduce a scooping, angular or teasing movement of the stylus which has not hitherto been possible in apparatus of this kind.
Considerable variations can be made in the method of constructing manipulators according to this principle but the examples described will show reasonable limits. The examples shown in Figures 3 and 5 have the merit of giving very considerable movement in any direction as distinct from many devices seeking to give similar effects.
What I claim is:
A manipulator for effecting micro-movement of an article or tool comprising two horizontally spaced and parallel plane pantograph linkages, each formed of a plurality of links articulated to one another by universal joints for relative pivotal movement in their common plane, a plurality of transverse links connected by universal joints to and extending horizontally between corresponding points of corresponding links of said two pantograph linkages, whereby the said two linkages are held in horizontally spaced parallel relation, one of said transverse links serving as a support for the manipulator, a second of said transverse links being manually movable to effect simultaneous pivotal movement of the pantograph linkages in their respective common planes, and a third of said transverse links being connected to corresponding points of corresponding links of said two pantograph linkages and being movable thereby in response to movements of said pantograph linkages by said second transverse link, and means for detachably securing the article to be manipulated to said third transverse link.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Inglese July 30, 1918 Wilder Oct. 26, 1943 Porter May 10, 1949 FOREIGN PATENTS France Nov. 6, 1926 France Mar. 22, 1943 Germany Aug. 24, 1923