Scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Photonic Microsystems (IPMS) in Dresden have developed a tiny laser-based microscope head that enables real-time, in vivo diagnosis of cancer during endoscopy. The device fits in the tip of an endoscope, and combines a MEMS image sensor with a microscanner mirror to resolve images to 10 micrometers, massively magnifying the tiniest structures at a scale not found in today’s CCD/CMOS macroscopic endoscopes.
From the press release:
The laser itself is located in the operating theater. The laser light is conducted via a transmitting fiber to the microscanner mirror fitted in the tip of the endoscope. This deflects the laser beam and illuminates the suspicious tissue specifically. A glass-fiber bundle in the tip of the endoscope transmits the reflected light to the external sensor, which thus receives a signal containing the image information. A detector precisely measures the position of the scanner mirror, indicating which area of the scene is being illuminated at the specific point in time. A 2D image can thus be completely reconstructed by combining the position and image sensor signals.
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