Nikon's Coolscope promises to have big impact on microscope-based telemedicine applications

Badhoevedorp 23 May 2003Nikon Instruments Europe BV, based in The Netherlands, has developed a digital microscope for applications in biological and clinical applications. The innovative product is called Coolscope and offers a new vision in microscopy as well as a huge potential to be used in advanced telemedicine settings.

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The new Coolscope combines groundbreaking technology with unsurpassed simplification in digital imaging for stained specimens in clinical and scientific applications in pathology, histology, anatomy, and morphology etc. Digital imaging and image network transfer is at the click of a mouse button.

Coolscope saves time by passing traditional microscope set-up procedures, digital camera operation and connections to a PC. It enables quick observation of standard bright field specimens in a fast and simple manner. Coolscope's automated set-up functions take the strain out of microscopy. In addition, it employs fast auto focus, motorised magnification changing, aperture diaphragm, light intensity and auto white balance controls plus a motorised specimen stage.

A compact design allows for ergonomic observation and operation at the click of a mouse. Free from complicated operations, the user now can fully focus on the diagnosis, navigating through the specimen selecting the appropriate areas of interest. Resulting in an effective and stress free method of microscopy.

The user simply loads the slide and Coolscope takes over automatically, generating a macro overview image. Navigation is a simple process using the mouse to view any position on the specimen, continuous scrolling or jumping frame by frame. In the main image window a magnified live image can be called up.

The current position of the magnified live image can be marked in the macro image. Up to 10 coordinates can be stored allowing the user to switch between stored and live positions with a click on the mouse. The system includes four magnifications 5x, 10x, 20x, and 40x, focus position and digital camera settings can be stored and changed quickly in the easy to use Graphical User Interface.

Integrated into the Coolscope is a bright, homogenous LED illumination module, a 5-mega-pixel digital camera, providing bright, high-resolution images in SXGA format. High-resolution images can be stored easily on a compact flash card with a resolution up to 2560 x 1920 pixels.

Moreover, Coolscope can be directly integrated in a network such as LAN or Internet, using a TCP/IP protocol, for storing images on a server or enabling remote viewing of Coolscope images for tele-microscopy. Connecting the Coolscope to a video projector in clinical meeting presentations for teaching and case discussions is possible too.

The Nikon Coolscope not only looks like an innovative digital microscope, but with a technology package of modern digital optics, state-of-the-art camera technology and Nikon's renowned precision mechanics, it sets the new standard in digital microscopy.


Leslie Versweyveld

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