US 3285242 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
NOV. l5, 1966 F- WALLACE SURGICAL HEADLIGHT AND LIGHT SOURCE F'iled July l, 1965 'IIL MII;
United States Patent O M 3,285,242 SURGICAL EEADLIGHT AND LIGHT SOURCE Frederick J. Wallace, New York, N .Y., assignor to American Cystoscope Makers, Inc., Pelham Manor, N.Y., a corporation of New York Filed .luly 1, 1963, Ser. No. 291,619 4 Claims. (Cl. 12S-23)- 'Ihe present invention relates to an illumination device adapted to be attached to the person of a user. More particularly, this invention relates to an illumination device, adapted, in a preferred embodiment, to be worn on the head of a user, which is especially suitable for use in carrying out procedures that require the highest degree of precision particularly in closely-confined areas.
When a conventional head lamp is utilized as a light source for illumination of a work area, a lamp and lens assembly of relatively large and bulky dimension is required to obtain high intensity illumination of the work area. Apart from its weight, such an arrangement when used to provide high intensity illumination is characterized by the generation of a large quantity of radiant heat which is projected along with the light to the area being illuminated. It is often necessary to limit the intensity of illumination to a lower value than that desired in order to avoid damage to the object under view from excessive heat. For example, in the carrying out of precision jewelry and metal working techniques or in the performance of lmedical or surgical procedures, the heat sensitivity of the object under view may be such as to result in unsatisfactory illumination for the work required to be carried out.
The present invention overcomes such difficulties, as well as others associated with conventional light sources, especially in illuminating small, confined work areas. In carrying out the present invention, light from a high intensity light source is transmitted by a long, flexible light carrier to a lens system adapted to be worn by or attached to the 'body of the user. The high intensity light source may be located at any convenient place and may, if desired, be adapted to be carried by or -attached to the body of the user. The li-ght carrier, which may be 3 to 6 feet or more in length, ensures that the @high light source is remote and isolated from lthe lens system which serves to direct light onto the work area. A high degree of llexibility and control of the intensity of the light and the area illuminated is provided by ready adjustment of i-ts focus alforded by the construction of the lens system and full control over the degree of energization of the lamp.
The long light carrier provides good thermal insulation between the light source and the lens system. In addition, an effective heat dissipating means, associated with the light source serves to maintain at a safe value the operating temperature of thevend of the light carrier pre- -sented to the light source.
It kis a principal object of the present invention to provide an improved illumination device particularly well suited for the illumination of objects which are sensitive to or yadversely affected by the heat associated with conventional lighting devices which is exceedingly simple, compact and adapted to be carried by the user.
It is a further object of the present invention to provide an improved illumination device, particularly well-suited for carrying out medical examinations, surgical procedures, and the like, for directing a cool, high intensity light beam onto a Work area in front of the user, which is of exceedingly simple, compact design and adapted to be attached to the 'body of the user.
It is another object of the ,present Vinvention -to provide an illumination apparatus, adapted to be worn on 4the head of the person, for directing a high intensity light 3,285,242 Patented Nov. 15, 1966 beam at a viewing area in front of Ithe eyes of the person, wherein the portion of the apparatus carried on the head is of significantly reduced size and weight compared t0 conventional head-mounted lamps heretofore known.
It is still another object of the present invention to provide an illumination device, adapted to be .carried on the head of a user and directable at a point in front thereof, which is especially suitable for close work Within small, confined areas.
The foregoing and other objectives, features and advantages of the present invention will be more readily understood upon consideration of the following detailed description of the invention, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings:
FIGURE 1 Iis a partially perspective, partially sectional view of the illustrative embodiment of the present invention;
FIGURE 2 is a fragmentary, sectional view of this illustrative embodiment, the sectional plane passing through the lines 2 2 in FIGURE l; and
FIGURE 3 is a fragmentary, sectional view of ythis illustrative embodiment, the :sectional plane passing through the line 3 3 in FIGURE l.
Referring now to FIGURE l, there is shown therein an illustrative embodiment of an illumination device 10, according to the present invention. The major elements of the device comprise a lens housing 40, a Aflexible light carrier 70, and a high intensity light source 100. Light from the source is directed onto one end of an elongated bundle of glass fibers contained within the light carrier 70 and transmitted thereby to the lens system in the housing 40, where it is then projected onto the work area to 'be illuminated. The lens housing 40 is supported by an arm member 32 which is attached to a band 20 adapted to be worn about the head of the user.
The band 20 maybe of any suitable construction and in the present instance is in the form of a flexible belt which wraps around the head of the wearer and is adjustably secured by one or more tabs 24. A cross band 26 may `be connected .adjacent to its opposite ends by means of studs 26A to opposite sides of band 20. The cross band 26` is adapted to pass over the head of the wearer and approximately at its top carries a loop member 26B through -which the light carrier 70 passes.
The arm member 32 is connected to the band 20 by 'means of a ball joint comprising a Iball 30, preferably formed of nylon, affixed to one end of arm 32. yCooperating with the ball 30 is a retaining ring 3-1 which Ihas a central opening, the diameter of which is smaller than that of the ball. The retaining rin-g 31 is in adjustable threaded engagement with a swivel housing 33 to which the 'ring 31 is locked by means of a 'threaded bezel ring 31A. The swivel housing 33 is fixed to a support plate 22 which is in turn riveted to the band 20.
The arm member 32 extends from the ball joint 30 and is suitably angled to form a support for the lens housing 40. Further articulation of the arm 32 with the housing 40 is provided by means of a second bal-l joint comprising a ball 34, also preferably formed of nylon, axed to the opposite Tend of arm 32. The lball joint 34 is similar to ball joint 30 and comprises retaining ring 36, bezel ring 36A and a swivel housing 38.
The swivel housing 38 is connected to one end of a sleeve 48 forming part of the lens housing 40. The other end of this sleeve 48 is externa-lly threaded for engagement with an internally threaded cover -tube 41. Coaxially fitted within the sleeve 48 Vis a Vtubular lens holder 50 through one end of which the light carrier 70 extends. Supported at the other end of this lens holder is a hemispheric diffuser lens 46 which is positioned adjacent to an-end of `the light carrier 70 in a manner which will hereinafter be more ful-ly described.
An objective lens 42 is mounted inside the cover tube 41 and held in place by means of a bezel ring. The objective lens 42, together with the hemispheric diffuser lens 46, provides a projection system for light emerging from the end of the light carrierV '70. The cover tube 41 is in threaded engagement with the sleeve 48 whereby the objective lens may be displaced axially relative to the hemisphere lens 46, thus providing a variable focus for the lens system.
As shown in FIGURES 2 and 3, the light carrier 70, which serves to transmit light from the high intensity light source 100 to the lens housing 40 carried on the head of the wearer, has a central, flexible bundle 75 comprising a large number of extremely small diameter lightconducting glass-coated glass fibers tightly packed together at the opposite ends of the bundle to form cylindrical arrays approximately 1A inch in diameter. The fiber glass bundle 75 may be six feet or more in length and may be manufactured in accordance with the method described in a copending application of lLawrence E. Curtiss, Serial No. 76,868, filed December 19, 1960, now Patent No. 3,236,710.
The glass fibers 75 of the bundle are enclosed in a flexible sheath 76 formed of latex or other suitable material. Each of the opposite ends of the sheath 76 is sealed to a sleeve 74 carrying planar lenses 72, 73, respectively, which abuts against one of the polished end faces of the bundle. A spirally-wound spring 78, preferably formed of stainless steel, extends along the bundle to protect the same Without impairing its flexibility and the entire assembly, except for its ends, is covered by a protective flexible casing 79 formed of suitable material such as a plastic or the like. j
As has been pointed out, one end of the light carrier 70 extends into the lens housing 40 and, as most clearly shown in FIGURE 2, a bushing 52 within the lens holder 50 serves to anchor the end of the carrier 70 against the at surface of the lens 46, whereby the end face of the bundle 75 is positioned in the focal plane of the lens system which also includes the objective lens 42.
For removably connecting it to the light source 100, the light carrier 70 is tted with a plug-in connector 80 for insertion into a receptacle or jack 90 mounted in the side wall of the -light source housing 102. The end of the light carrier 70 carrying the planar lens 73 is positioned in the connector 80 and is anchored in place by means of its engagement with sleeve 81 which in turn is in threaded engagement with the connector 80. The exterior surface of the connector 80 makes good surfaceto-surface contact with the interior surface of the tubular jack 90 and has an annular recess 93 for clamping engagement with an annular spring 91 carried by the jack.
When, as in the present instance, the light supply 100 is of compact, light construction suitable for use as a portable unit, the housing 102 is conveniently provided with a handle 104. A lamp 106, capable of providing an intense beam of light, is mounted in a socket supported on a platform 103 in the housing 102. A lamp suitable for providing a sufciently intense light is one manufactured by Sylvania Electric Products, Inc., under the designation ASA-DLG 150 T14 TER/LV. The light from the lamp is brought to a sharp focus at a point located a short distance in front of the lamp bulb. Adjustable means, of which only the adjusting screw 107 is shown in FIGURE l, are provided so that the platform 103 upon which the lamp and its socket are mounted may be shifted horizontally and vertically relative to the end face of the light carrier 70. Thus, precise adjustment of the position of the lamp 102 is provided to bring the focal point of the lamp into register upon the end face of the light carrier 70.
Heat generated by the lamp 106 is dissipated by means of a blower 120 juxtaposed to a screened opening 122 and driven by motor 124. A radiator assembly, made up of a plurality of annular fins 92 in good thermal contact 4 through the jack with the connector 80 and the end of the glass fiber bundle, prevents damage to the latter which would otherwise result from melting of the glass of the fibers from the intense heat present at the focal point of the lamp.
An on-off switch (not shown) as well as a pilot lamp 118 are provided to facilitate control of the unit. Advantageously, a rheostat 116 is utilized in conjunction with the transformer 110 required to operate the lamp 106 from ya 120 volt power line. The rheostat 116 is operated by means of a suitable control knob to provide desired variations in the level of energization of the lamp 106.
In operation, the band 20 is Worn on the head of the user with the lens housing 40 projecting forwardly and above the eyes. With the connector 80 plugged into the light supply and the switch turned on, the desired degree of light intensity can be obtained from the objective lens 102 by adjusting the control knob of the rheostat 116. The area illuminated is readily controlled, both by shifting the position of the lens housing 40 relative to the control arm 32 about the ball joint 34 and by shifting the arm about the ball joint 30 relative to the band 20. Thus, a wide range of vertical and lateral articulation is provided which facilitates illumination and viewing of areas both above and below the viewer as well as to the right or left. Also, adjustment of the focus of the lens system may be readily controlled by rotating the cover tube 41. Rotation of the cover tube 41, that is, adjustment of the focus of the lens system, serves to vary the diameter of the illuminated area. Thus, by these adjustments a Wide range of both light intensity and light distribution are readily and rapidly available.
The light leaving the objective lens 42 is very cool compared to that yavailable Iat the lamp 106 and yet provides a level of illumination Iof up to about 6000 foot candles or more on a plane about five inches from the lens 42. Adjustment of the focus of the present embodiment permits variat-ion of the diameter -of the illuminated area from about 1.5 to 5 inches at a distance of about five inches from the objective lens 42. Thus, a level of illumination far greater that that available hitherto is provided by the illuminating device of the present Iinvention Which is especially well suited for use as a headlight by doctors -or surgeons.
In Iaddition to providing a cool, readily controllable light, the illuminating device provided in accordance with the present invention is also exceedingly light and compact so that it may be worn by the user with a minimum of fatigue or interference with the Work being carried out.
The terms and expressions which have been employed here are used as terms of description and not of limitation, and there is no intention, in the use Iof such terms and expressions, of excluding equivalents of the features shown and described, -or portions thereof, it being recognized that various modifications are possible within the scope of the invention claimed:
What is claimed is:
1. A headlight for use in carrying out surgical procedures, comprising means lfor attachment to the body of the user including a headband adapted for encircling the head of the user, an elongated arm member, first adjustable Iball and socket joint means connecting one end of said arm member to said headband, connected -to and extending forwardly from said headband, a lens housing, second adjustable ball :and socket joint means connecting said housing -to the other end of said arm member, an elongated light-conducting flexible bundle of a large number of extremely fine glass-coated glass fibers having one end thereof extending in and connected to said housing, a high intensity light source having a sharply focused light beam, means removably receiving and anchoring the other end of said light-conducting bundle substantially at the focus of said light beam, cooling means including an array of radiator fins in good thermally conductive relation with s-aid other end of said light-conducting bundle, a cross band connected adjacent to the opposite ends thereof to the opposite sides of said headband, means connecting said light-conducting bundle to said cross band, and lens means mounted in said housing for directing and focusing light from said one end of said light-conducting bundle onto an area to be illuminated.
2. A headlight for use in carrying out surgical procedures, comprising means for attachment to the head of a user including an adjustable flexible band, an elongated arm member -connected to and extending forwardly from said band, a lens housing, adjustable ball and socket joint means connecting the opposite ends of said arm member to said housing and to said band, an elongated lightconducting flexible bundle of a large number of extremely ne glass-coated glass fibers having one end thereof extending in and connected to said housing, a high intensity light s-ource having a sharply focused light beam and means removably receiving and -anchoring the other end of said light-conducting bundle substantially at the focus of said light beam, cooling means including an array of radiator ns in ,good thermally conducting relation with said other end of said light-conducting bundle, lens means mounted in said housing, and means for focusing light from said one end of said light-conducting bundle onto an area to be illuminated Iand for adjusting the size of the illuminated area in a plane a predetermined distance from said housing and for adjusting the intensity of the light incident thereon.
3. Apparatus as set forth in claim 2 comprising a power supply control means including a rheostat for selectively adjusting the intensity of said light beam, said cooling means including blower means for -dissipating heat from said ns and said light source, and means for adjusting the position of said light beam relative to said other end of said light-conducting bundle.
4. A headlight for use in carrying out surgical procedures, comprising an adjustable flexible band, a cross band connected adjacent opposite ends thereof to the opposite sides of said iiexi'ble band and adopted to pass 40 over the top of the head of the user, a tubular lens holder and a `diffuser lens carried thereby, a sleeve enclosing said lens holder, a cover -tube and an objective lens mounted therein, said cover tube being rotatably mounted on said sleeve for displacing said -objective lens toward and away from said diffuse-r lens, an elongated arm member, adjustable ball and socket joint means connecting the opposite ends of said arm member to said sleeve and to said ilexible band, an elongated light-conducting flexible bundle with a large number of extremely tine glasscoated glass fibers having one end thereof extending in and connected to said lens holder with said one end of said light-conducting .exible bundle juxtaposed to said diffuser lens, means on said cross band for engaging said light-conducting ilexible bundle, va high intensity light source including means for forming a sharply focused light beam, means removably receiving and anchoring the other end of said lightconducting bundle substantially at the focus of said light beam, cooling means including an array of radiator tins in good thermally conducting relation with said other end of said light-conducting bundle, power supply control means including a rheostat for selectively adjusting the intensity of `said light beam, said cooling means including blower means for dissipating heat from said ns and said light source, and means for justing the position of said light beam relative to said other end of said light-conducting bundle.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,282,133 10/1918 Sperry 240-47 1,705,465 3/ 1929 Cameron 240-59 2,257,232 9/1941 Flint et al. 240-47 3,020,806 2/1962 Castrucci 88-1 3,051,166 8/1962 Hovnanian 12S-4 3,131,690 5/1964 Innis et al 12S-23 3,195,536 7/ 1965 Hovnani-an et al 128-6 FOREIGN PATENTS 595,729 12/ 1947 Great Britain. 1,113,788 9/ 1961 Germany.
RICHARD A. GAUDET, Primary Examiner. DALTON L. TRULUCK, Examiner.