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Publication numberUS2866101 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 23, 1958
Filing dateAug 29, 1955
Priority dateAug 29, 1955
Publication numberUS 2866101 A, US 2866101A, US-A-2866101, US2866101 A, US2866101A
InventorsEugene P Thomas, Robert J Wagner
Original AssigneeWestinghouse Electric Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
X-ray apparatus
US 2866101 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

INVENTORS ATTORNEY Dec. 23, 1958 WAGNER ET AL 2,866,101

X-RAY APPARATUS 6 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Aug. 29, 1955 Robert J. Wagner 8 Eugene P. Thomas. M

Dec. 23, 1958 Filed Aug. 29, 1955 R. J. WAGNER ET AL X-RAY APPARATUS Sheets-Sheet 2 Dec. 23, 1958 R. J. WAGNER ET AL 2,866,101

X-RAY APPARATUS 6 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed Aug. 29, 1955 Dec. 23, 1958 R. J. WAGNER ET AL 2,866,101

X-RAY APPARATUS 6 Sheets-Sheet 4 Filed Aug. 29, 1955 R. J. WAGNER ET AL 2,866,101

X-RAY APPARATUS 6 Sheets-Sheet 5 Filed Aug. 29, 1955 Dec. 23, 1958 R. J. WAGNER ETAL 2,866,101

X-RAY APPARATUS Filed Aug. 29, 1955 e Sheets-Sheet 6 United States Patent 2,866,101 X-RAY APPARATUS Robert J. Wagner and Eugene P. Thomas, Baltimore, Md., assignors to Westinghouse Electric Corporation, East Pittsburgh, Pa., a corporation of Pennsylvania Application August 29, 1955, Serial No. 531,171

4 Claims. (Cl. 25091) The present invention relates, in general, to X-ray apparatus'and, more particularly, to X-ray tube positioning apparatus by which the operative position of an X-ray tube, relative to the patient or object being subjected to X-rays from that tube, can be more readily determined.

It is an object of the present invention to provide an improved X-ray tube positioning apparatus.

It is another object to provide an improved X-ray tube positioning apparatus which will allow a substantially straight-line vertical movement of the X-ray tube as may be desired, relative to the patient or object subjected to the X-rays from that tube.

It is a difierent object to provide an improved X-ray tube positioning apparatus which is counterbalanced to compensate for the load of the X-ray tube, as well as any weight of the various components of the apparatus itself.

It is a further object to provide improved X-ray apparatus including X-ray tube positioning apparatus which is counterbalanced over the complete range of desired travel of the X-ray tube.

It is an additional object to provide improved X-ray apparatus which is operative to keep the resultant movement of the X-ray tube synchronized with the movement of the positioning apparatus itself, such that the X-ray tube is maintained in the desired orientation relative to the patient or object being subjected to X-rays from the X-ray tube.

It is still another object to provide improved X-ray apparatus including an improved guide member arrangement for handling the power supply cable for the X- ray tube.

These and other objects of the present invention will be apparent upon reading the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:

Figure 1. is a perspective view of the apparatus in accordance with the present invention showing the X-ray tube positioning apparatus including the power supply cable handling apparatus;

Fig. 2 is an end view of a portion of the apparatus taken in a direction parallel to the transverse support track in accordance with the present invention;

Fig. 3 is a top view of a portion of the apparatus in accordance with the present invention;

Fig. 4 is a side view of a portion of the apparatus in accordance with the present invention;

Fig. 5 is a partial perspective view of a portion of the apparatus in accordance with the present invention; and

Figs. 6 through 10 are schematic views of a portion of the apparatus in accordance with the present invention showing the operation of the X-ray tube support and positioning apparatus to show how the apparatus can be extended and folded or inverted.

Referring to Fig. 1 of the drawings, there is shown X-ray tube positioning and support apparatus in accordance with the present invention as this apparatus may be set up in atypical X ray examination room. A pair of first support track members 10 are positioned in' a first.-

such as, for example, parallel to the greatest or longitudinal dimension of the room. Each of these track members 10 includes a rail surface 12 along which the X-ray support apparatus moves on suitable rollers or the like. One of the track members 10 includes an X-ray tube power supply cable guide or handling apparatus 14 for the cable 16. A pair of second or transverse trackmembers i8 are provided for supporting the X-ray tube positioning apparatus. The latter or second track members 18' move along the first track members 10 for any desired degree or length of the provided room. An

X-ray tube housing 20 is supported through a tube yoke member 22 and a tube support arm 24 by means of a support link member 26, which is connected between a first movable support carriage member 28 and a second movable support carriage member 30. A radius arm 32 is connected between the second carriage mem-berl30 and the link member 26. The power supply cables 16 are connected between suitable source terminals 34 and pass throughthe first cable guide member 14 and one or more second cable guide members 36. The illustration of Fig. 1 shows one of the second cable guide members 36 is provided within each of the pair of transverse track members 18.

In Fig. 2, there is shown a view of a portion of the apparatus shown in Fig. 1 taken in a direction parallel ond track members 18 are positioned. The outer carriage member includes at least one support roller 44 for each of the support arms 40, which support rollers 44 .roll on the rail portions 42 of each second track member 18. The inner carriage member 28 includes support rollers 46 which also ride on the rail portions 42 of the second track members 18. The power supply cables 16 are shown passing from the source terminals 34 through the respective first cable guides 14 and the second cable guides 36 to the support link member 26 of the inner carriage member ZSthrough which they pass to the tube support arm 24 and the tube yoke 22 to the X-ray tube within the tube'housing 20.

The support link member 26 includes a pair of extension arms 48 which are pivotally connected to the inner carriage member28 at the pivot connections 50. The linkmember 26 is pivotally connected to the radius arms 32 at the pivotal connections 52. The radius arms 32 are similarly pivotally connected to the downward extending arms 40 of the outer carriage member 30 at pivotal connections 54.

A tube position synchronizing member or chain 56 is provided within the link member 26 and is connected between a sprocket 58 which rotates through the pivotal connections 52 with the radius arms 32, and a second sprocket member 60 which rotates through the pivotal connection 62 with the tube arm 24.

A trimmer weight 64 is provided within the link member 26 and is connected to an adjustable trimmer weight control knob 66 which is operative with a slot 68 in the riage member 30 and around a support pulley 78 on each of the radius arms 32.

With reference to Fig. 3, there is shown the tension springs 70 connected at one end to an anchor member 80 which is rigidly connected between the second track members 18. The other end of each of the spring members 70 is connected to a connector member 82 to which each of the counterbalance cables 72 are connected. Each of the pair of cables 72 from the connector member 82 passes around the first or crossover pulley members 74 to a first of the second pulley members 76 of the outer carriage member 30 and then around the support pulley 78 connected to the radius arm 32, and then back over a second of the second support pulley members 76 of the outer carriage member 30 and back to a second connection 84 to the anchor member 80. The inner carriage member 28 is shown in Fig. 3 displaced from between the support arms 40 of the outer carriage member 30. The link member 26 is shown connected between the radius arms 32 at the pivotal connections 52, and the extending arms 48 of the link member 26 are shown connected to the opposite sides of the inner carriage member 28 at the pivotal connections 50. The power supply cable 16 is shown passing from the link member 26 to a position within the second cable guide member 36 and then through the first cable guide members 14.

The second track members 18 are connected between end interconnecting members 86 with the latter members including support rollers 88 which ride on the rail surfaces 12 of the first track members 10. Lateral support rollers 90 are provided for the end support members 86, which latter support rollers 90 also are operative with an upright portion of the support rails 12 of the first track members 10.

In Fig. 4, there is shown a partial section side schematic view of the apparatus in accordance with the present invention showing the X-ray tube housing 20 held by the tube yoke 22 and the tube arm 24 which latter arm 24 is pivotally connected to the link member 26 at the pivotal connection 62. The sprocket member 60 is provided at the pivotal connection 62 and is operative through a synchronizing chain or like member 56 with another sprocket member 58 provided at the pivotal connection 52 between the radius arm 32 and the link member 26. Preferably, the sprocket 60 has a ratio of 2:1 as compared to sprocket 58 for the particular apparatus illustrated. This sprocket ratio is determined by the dimensions of the link member 26 and the radius arm 32. The link member 26 is pivotally connected to the inner carriage member 28 at pivot connection 50. Each of the radius arms 32 is pivotally connected to one of the downward support arms 40 of the outer carriage member 30 at the pivotal connection 54. The power supply cable 16 is shown passing from the first cable guide 14 to the second cable guide 36 and then down to the link member 26. The rail portion 12 of the first track member is shown operative with the support rollers 88 of the end support member 86 which is connected between the second track members 18. The support rollers 46 of the inner carriage member 28 are shown to be operative with the rail section 42 of one of the second track members 18. The support roller 44 of the outer carriage member 30 is shown operative with the rail surface 42 of one of the second track members 18. One of the tension spring members 70 is shown connected between the anchor member 80 of the transverse end support member 86 and the counterbalance cable 72. The latter cable 72 passes around a first or crossover pulley 74 and then back to a first of the support pulleys 76 of the outer carriage member 30. The cable 72 then passes around the pulley 78 connected to the radius arm 32 and back over a second of the support pulleys 76 of the outer carriage member 30, from which it passes to the second anchor connection 84 as shown in Fig. 3,

In Fig. 5, there is shown a partial section and perspective view of a portion of the apparatus in accordance with the present invention, showing in more detail the arrangement of the tension spring members connected between the anchor member 80 and the connector member 82. The counterbalance cable 72 is shown connected to the connector member 82 and passing around one of the crossover pulley members 74, each of which latter pulley members is pivotally connected to one of the second track members 18. A suitable brake member is provided to lock the movement of the pulley 74, with a friction stop member 77 being provided to engage the pulley 74 as desired. The counterbalance cable 72 then passes around the first of the support pulleys 76 of the outer carriage member 30, around the pulley 78 which is pivotally connected to one of the radius arms 32, and then back over the second of the support pulleys 76 of the outer carriage member to the connection 84 with the anchor member 80. A suitable brake member 79, which may be electrically operated, is provided to effectively lock the outer carriage member 30 to the rail surface 42- of the second track member 18. A friction stop member 81 is provided to actually engage the rail surface 42.

The support roller 44 of the outer carriage member 30 is shown riding on the rail surface 42 of one of the second track members 18. The inner carriage member 28 is shown with its support rollers 46 rolling on the rail surfaces 42 of the respective second or transverse track members 18. The link member 26 is shown pivotally connected to the inner carriage member 28 at pivotal connection 50. The tube arm 24 is shown connected to the tube yoke 22 and the housing for the X-ray tube 20. The tube arm 24 is pivotally connected to the link member 26 at pivotal connection 62. The synchronizer chain or like member 56 is shown passing around the sprocket member 58 which rotates with the radius arm 32 relative to the link member 26. The trimmer weight 64 is adjustable along the slot 68 within the link member 26 by means of the adjustable control member or knob 66.

In Figs. 6 through 10, there is schematically illustrated the operation of the inner carriage member 28 relative to the outer carriage member 30 along the rail surfaces 42 of the respective second or transverse track members 18. The link member 26 is shown pivotally connected between the inner carriage member 28 and the radius arm 32 which latter radius arm 32 is pivotally connected to the outer carriage member 30. The X-ray tube housing 20 is shown held by the tube yoke 22 and the tube arm 24, which tube arm 24 is pivotally connected to the link member 26.

In Fig. 6, there is shown an extended position of the inner carriage member 28 relative to the outer carriage member 30, and the X-ray tube within the housing is vertically positioned somewhere between its highest position and its lowest position.

In Fig. 7, the tube housing 20, and hence the X-ray tube within it, has been lowered by moving the inner carriage member 28 closer to the outer carriage member 30.

In Fig. 8, the tube housing 20 is shown in its lowermost position with the inner carriage member 28 positioned immediately within the outer carriage member 30.

In Fig. 9, the tube housing 20 has been vertically raised relative to the position shown in Fig. 8, and in Fig. 9, the inner carriage member 28 has passed between and beyond the outer carriage member 30, such that there is now a separation between these two carriage members.

In Fig. 10, the uppermost position of the tube housing 20 is shown with the inner carriage member 28 separated from the outer carriage member 30 such that tube arm 24 and tube yoke 22 are allowed to pass between the pair of rail surfaces 42 of the respective second or transverse track members 18.

In the operation of the apparatus shown in Figs. 1 through 10, the tube housing 20 is supported by an accurate counterbalance support or positioning apparatus and the position of the X-ray tube within the tube housing 20 may be varied to cover a patient or object in a great variety of positions within the X-ray room shown in Fig. 1. More specifically, straight-line vertical movement of the X-ray tubehead can be obtained with the positioning apparatus fully counterbalanced in any position of the tubehead, and the linkage arrangement between the inner and outer carriage members may be extended and folded to permit maximum room coverage by the X-ray tube within the tube housing 20. More specifically, the pair of second track members 18 are rigidly held in position relative to each other between end support members 86 and as a unit may be moved along the first track members to longitudinally position the X-ray tube housing 20, as may be desired. The inner carriage member 28 and the outer carriage member 30 may be moved along the second track members 18, as desired, to transversely position the tube housing 207 If only vertical movement of the tube housing 20 is desired, the outer carriage member 30 may be fixed in position by a suitable locking or brake member 79 relative to the transverse or second track members 18, and as the tube housing 211 is raised or lowered, the radius arms 32 rotate around the pivotal connections 54 and the inner carriage member 28 is thereby moved along the rail surfaces 42 of the respective second track members 18, such that a constrained vertical straight-line motion of the tube housing 20 results. On the other hand, if the horizontal positioning of the tube housing 20 is desired without vertical movement, the crossover pulleys 74 may be locked in position by a suitable locking member 75 to prevent their rotation relative to the track members 18, and the inner carriage member 28"and the outer carriage member 353 may be moved along the second track members 18 to any such horizontal position that may be desired. A very accurate weight counterbalance is provided by means of the tension spring members 70 and the counterbalance cable 72 passing around the support pulley members 76 on the outer carriage member 30 and the support pulley 78 on each of the radius arms 32. A prior art teaching of the use of a spring member having a straight-line stressstrain relationship to provide a flexible or variable moment equal and opposite to a weight which rotates around a pivot point can be found in the Transactions of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers vol. 73 for 1951, pages 141 through 145 in an article entitled Accurate spring counterbalancing by W. S. Rouverol.

As the tube housing 20 is raised or lowered, the counterbalancing cable 72 effectively lengthens or shortens the tension spring members 70 to provide the desired counterbalance force for the weight of the X-ray tube 20 and any other parts of the positioning apparatus, the weight of which it is desired to counterbalance. The trimmer weight 64 can be moved within the slot 68 to compensate for a heavier or lighter X-ray tube or tube cone within the tube yoke 22. For example, when using a heavy tube cone for the X-ray tube within the X-ray housing 20, the trimmer weight 64 may be locked within the slot 68 at a position farthest away from the tube arm 24, and to compensate for removal of such a cone, the trimmer weight 64 may he slid toward the other end of the slot 68 to a position closer or closest to the tube arm 24.

The synchronizer chain or like member 56 is operative to maintain proper orientation between the tube arm 24 and the link member 26 such that the X-ray tube is properly aligned with the patient as the inner carriage member 28 is moved into position either closer to or further away from the outer carriage member 30 to fold or extend the linkage arrangement. In this respect, a 2:1 sprocket ratio between the sprockets 60 and 58 has been found to be desirable, with the sprocket 58 being fixed in position relative to the radius arm 32 and the sprocket 69 being fixed in position relative to the tube arm In the operation of the first power supply cable guide 14 and the second power supply cable guide 36, the power supply cable 16 is rather heavy and may have a diameter of the order of 73 inch or more, and a minimum permissible bending radius of the order of 3 inches or more. In addition the X-ray tube is mounted in positioning apparatus which allows the X-ray tube to travel longitudinally the full length of the room and transversely the full width of the room. Therefore, the cable guide arrangement shown particularly in Fig. 1 should support the power supply cable 16 such that there is no objectionable and variable weight drag to affect the position of the tube housing 20. The power supply cable 16 enters the first cable guide 14 from the bottom and is clamped to the first cable guide 14 where it so enters the latter guide. The power supply cable 16 is then passed along the bottom of the cable guide 14 for a predetermined distance from which point it is looped back on itself. The free end of the power supply cable 16 is then introduced into the bottom of the second cable guide 36, where it is fastened to the latter guide. The power supply cable 16 is then passed along the bottom of the second cable guide 36 and looped back on itself with the free end then passing down to the link member 36 through which it passes to supply power to the X-ray tube within the X-ray housing Ztl. Practically the only friction force which is involved and which must be overcome is internal bending friction of the power supply cable 16 itself within the respective cable guides 14 and 36, andrthe very slight frictional drag where the power supply cable 16 passes over the lip 1'5 of the respective cable guides, as shown in Fig. 4.

Although specific embodiments of the present in vention have been shown and described, it is to be understood that still further modifications thereof can be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. For example, the outer carriage member 30 may be subjected to a twisting or turning moment due to the tension in the counterbalance cable 72 passing around the pulley 78 on the radius arm 32, so the provision of two pairs of spaced rollers 44 operative with the rail section 42 might be desirable to resist this moment. In this respect one pair of the rollers would be placed above the rail section 42 and the other pair placed below the rail section 42.

We claim as our invention:

1. In positioning apparatus for an X-ray generator, a track member, a support member movable along the track member including a first carriage member and a second carriage member movable relative to said first carriage member in a direction parallel to said track member; a link member adapted to pivot to different angular positions in a vertical plane about said first carriage; a radius arm for connecting said link member and said second carriage, with said link member and said arm being provided to jointly support said X-ray generator in different vertically spaced positions; and counterbalance means for equilibriating the weight of said X-ray generator, said counterbalance means including a first portion, a second and intermediate resilient means joined at opposite ends thereto, respectively, means for holding said first portion in fixed position relative to said track, and flexible tensioning means for operating the resilient means, said tensioning means being connected to said second portion and extending to said link member at a predetermined point intermediate the ends thereof such that said flexible tensioning means continuously subjects said link member to a moment substantially equal to the product of the weight of said X-ray generator times the horizontal distance between the ends of said link member.

2. Apparatus for variably positioning an X-ray generator to project a radiation beam through an object to be examined comprising a support frame having a horizontally extending track, carriage means supported on I said track for horizontal movement therealong, a link member carrying an X-rayhousing and pivotally conequilibriate the weight of said link member and housing 7 at all vertically and horizontally shifted positions thereof, said counterpoise means comprising a helical tension spring'member having one end fixedly secured to said support frame, a first and a second pulley-supported on said carriage means, a third pulley carried on said link member intermediate the ends thereof, and a flexible cable extending from the opposite end of said tension spring member over said first pulley, downwardly to and around said third pulley, over said second pulley and finally being attached to said frame.

3. In X-ray apparatus comprising an X-ray tube housing, a horizontal overhead track, first and second carriages movable one relative to the other along said track, a link member tiltable to different angular positions with respect to the vertical about a pivotal connection with said first carriage at one end and carrying said X-ray tube housing at its opposite end for vertical movement of same, a pulley mounted on said second carriage, flexible tensioned means passing over said pulley and having a forceapplying connection with said link member intermediate its ends for subjecting said link member to a countermoment substantially equal to the moment to which said link member is subjected due to its own weight and that which it carries when disposed in said angular positions,

and means interconnecting said first and second carriages to separate same in degree according to said angular positions, thereby changing the orientation of said pulley and of said tensioned means with respect to said link member for changing the effectiveness of a given tension force applied by said tensioned means to said link member correspondingly with change in weight-induced moment resultant from change in angular position of said link member.

4. X-ray apparatus comprising an X-ray tube housing, a horizontal overhead track, carriage means movable along said track between travel limit stations, a link member tiltable vertically to different angular positions about a pivotal connection of its one end with said carriage means and carrying said X-ray tube housing at its opposite end for vertical movement of same, first and second pulley means carried by said carriage means and said link member, respectively, and flexible tensioned means ex- .tending longitudinally of said track between said travel limit stations while passing over said first pulley means and under said second pulley means whereby a counterbalancing lift force is applied by said tensioned means to said link member while permitting travel of said link member and carriage means in unison longitudinally of said track without influencing the tensioned state of said flexible tensioned means which is free to pass over said first and second pulley means during such travel.

References Cited in the file of this patent OTHER REFERENCES Industrial X-Ray Units, General Electric X-Ray Corporation, pub. 7A-700, received in the United States Pat- 35 cut Office 6/15/1942 (page 10 relied upon).

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1926902 *Mar 28, 1928Sep 12, 1933Kelley Koett Mfg CompanyRadiographic apparatus
US1974929 *Jun 15, 1931Sep 25, 1934Pieper Alphonse FX-ray apparatus
US2712080 *Nov 28, 1952Jun 28, 1955 High tension cable support for x-ray tables
US2737596 *Oct 28, 1950Mar 6, 1956Keleket X Ray CorpX-ray apparatus
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3037119 *Nov 2, 1959May 29, 1962Gen ElectricX-ray apparatus
US3516343 *Jul 26, 1967Jun 23, 1970Gilbert H TunneyCamera-positioning apparatus
US3541334 *Mar 22, 1967Nov 17, 1970Gen ElectricDevice for handling x-ray apparatus flexible conductors
US4076351 *Apr 19, 1976Feb 28, 1978Hobart Dale WyantUp-down cabinet
US4196630 *May 18, 1978Apr 8, 1980Rudolph Dale COverhead arm assembly
US4223230 *Sep 14, 1978Sep 16, 1980Siemens AktiengesellschaftX-Ray examination apparatus
US4630796 *Apr 22, 1985Dec 23, 1986U.S. Philips CorporationX-ray apparatus comprising a part mobile thereon
US8500722Oct 14, 2010Aug 6, 2013Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc.Methods for compact counter balance arms
Classifications
U.S. Classification378/194, 248/324, 212/195, 248/280.11, 212/337, 378/197
International ClassificationA61B6/00
Cooperative ClassificationA61B6/4464, A61B6/56
European ClassificationA61B6/44J8, A61B6/56