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1. WO2004064391 - CAMERA POLYVALENTE CONCUE POUR DIVERSES CONDITIONS DE VISIBILITE

Note: Texte fondé sur des processus automatiques de reconnaissance optique de caractères. Seule la version PDF a une valeur juridique

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CLAIMS
1. Versatile camera for various visibility conditions, comprising:
at least two sensors for capturing images of a scene and providing a digital signal representation of said images, wherein each sensor has a particular operational wavelength range; and
an optical and routing module for receiving incoming rays from said scene and routing said incoming rays toward said at least two sensors, respectively.

2. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein at least one of said at least two sensors comprises a poor visibility conditions sensor.

3. The versatile camera according to claim 2, wherein said poor visibility conditions sensor comprises a dim light amplifier.

4. The versatile camera according to claim 2, wherein said poor visibility conditions sensor comprises invisible light sensor for detecting and converting invisible light to a visible representation.

5. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein at least one of said at least two sensors comprises a daylight sensor.

6. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , further comprising a processor for merging in registration and processing the images provided by said sensor units.

7. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , further comprising at least two accelerometers for spatial stabilization of said display.

8. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , further comprising at least one gyroscope for spatial stabilization of said display.

9. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , further comprising a user line-of-sight detector, for spatial and temporal filtering.

10. The versatile camera according to claim 9, wherein said user line-of- sight detector comprises a head line-of-sight reader for spatial and temporal filtering at the pixel level with reference to the readings of said head line-of-sight reader.

1 1 . The versatile camera according to claim 9, wherein said user line-of- sight detector comprises an eye line-of-sight tracker for spatial and temporal filtering at the pixel level with reference to the readings of said eye line-of-sight tracker.

12. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein said at least two sensors include any combination from the list consisting of:
a visible daylight sensor;
a night vision enhancement sensor;
- a dim light enhancement sensor;
a 1.06 micron sensor; and
a Forward looking infra-red (FLIR) sensor.

13. The versatile camera according to claim 12, wherein said FLIR sensor may include any combination from the list consisting of:
an Indium Gallium Arsenide (InGaA) sensor;
an Indium Stibnite (InSb) sensor;
a non-refrigerated Vanadium Oxide (VOx) bolometer;
a Gallium Arsenide (GaA) sensor; and
- a Quantum Well Infrared Photodetector (QWIP).

14. The versatile camera according to claim 5, wherein said daylight sensor comprises an Active Pixel Sensor (APS) operational for the visible band from about 400-450nm to about 650-680nm.

15. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein one sensor of said at least two sensors comprises an Active Pixel Sensor (APS) operational at wavelengths above 950nm (high pass IR).

16. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein one sensor of said at least two sensors comprises an Active Pixel Sensor (APS) operational at the 1064nm IR frequency.
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17. The versatile camera according to claim 5, wherein said daylight sensor comprises an Active Pixel Sensor (APS) operational at visible daylight and at ranges extending beyond the visible daylight, and wherein said Active Pixel Sensor (APS) comprises a sensor selected o from the list consisting of:
a sensor at 1064nm IR frequency;
a high pass IR sensor above the wavelength of 950nm; and
a broadband sensor substantially operational from about 400nm to about 1100nm.
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18. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein at least one of said at least two sensors comprises an image intensifier (I2) coupled to an electronic video sensor.

o 19. The versatile camera according to claim 2, wherein said poor visibility conditions sensor comprises an image intensifier (I2) coupled to an electronic video sensor, which is operational for the about 650-680nm to about 950nm wavelength band.

20. The versatile camera according to claim 18, wherein said image intensifier (I2) comprises an optical on/off iris shutter.

21. The versatile camera according to claim 18, wherein said image intensifier (I2) is gated.

22. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein at least one of said at least two sensors comprises an Electron Bombardment Active Pixel Sensor (EBAPS).

23. The versatile camera according to claim 22, wherein said EBAPS is gated.

24. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein at least one of said at least two sensors comprises an Active Pixel Sensor (APS) compatible to a standard format selected from the list consisting of:
VGA;
SVGA;
- XGA;
QXGA;
UXGA;
SXGA; and HDTV.

25. The versatile camera according to claim 3, further comprising a High Voltage Power Supply (HVPS) for the dim light amplifier.

26. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein said optical and routing module comprises a router selected from the list consisting of: slanted semitransparent partially reflecting mirror;
prism;
- pellicle;
spectral splitter;
lenses;
diffractive element;
micro machining (mechanically deflecting plates
MEMS/MOEMS);
bifocal optics; and
multiple path optics.

27. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein said optical and routing module comprises a small-portion/large-portion splitter, wherein small-portion of the light intensity is directed to a daylight sensor and large-portion of the light intensity is directed toward a poor visibility conditions sensor.

28. The versatile camera according to claim 27, wherein said small- portion/large-portion splitter is selected from the list consisting of:
10%-90% prism, wherein 10% of the light intensity is directed to a daylight sensor and 90% is directed toward a poor visibility conditions sensor; and
10%-90% pellicle, wherein 90% of the light intensity is directed to a poor visibility conditions sensor and 10% is directed toward a daylight sensor.

29. The versatile camera according to claim 26, wherein said spectral splitter is a VIS-NIR separator.

30. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein said optical and routing module includes a notch filter for the 1064nm frequency.

31. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein said versatile camera is coupled with a display for displaying said scene.

32. The versatile camera according to claim 31 , wherein said display comprises a head mounted display.

33. The versatile camera according to claim 32, wherein said head mounted display is selected from the list consisting of:
helmet mounted display;
headset mounted display;
- goggles;
eyepiece;
binocular display; and
monocle.

34. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein said versatile camera is operative to apply display(s) to both eyes of the user, and wherein said digital signal representation of said images is divided for its separate application to each eye.

35. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein said versatile camera is operative to apply a display to a single eye of the user.

36. The versatile camera according to claim 23, wherein a second similar versatile camera is operative to apply a display to the other eye of the user.

37. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , mounted on, integral with, added on, or attachable to a device selected from the list consisting of:
helmet;
headset;
goggles;
eyepiece;
binoculars; and
monocle.

38. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , adapted for use in an air, space, sea, or land environment, for a direct or indirect scene, onboard a vehicle or for portable use by an individual.

39. The versatile camera according to claim 1 , wherein said scene is a direct scene, and said digital signal representation of said images is compatible to display in registration with said direct scene as seen by the user.

40. A method for providing images of a scene under various visibility conditions for a display, comprising the procedures of:
receiving incoming rays from said scene;

routing said incoming rays toward at least two sensors, wherein each of said at least two sensors has a particular operational wavelength range;
capturing images of said scene in each of said at least two sensors; and
providing a digital signal representation of said images.

41. The method for providing images according to claim 40, wherein said procedure of providing a digital signal representation of said images includes any combination of procedures selected from the list consisting of:
amplifying dim light; and
converting invisible light to a visible representation,
wherein said procedure is performed in at least one of said at least two sensors.

42. The method for providing images according to claim 41 , wherein at least one of said at least two sensors comprises a daylight sensor.

43. The method for providing images according to claim 40, further comprising the procedure of merging in registration the images provided by said at least two sensors.

44. The method for providing images according to claim 43, further comprising the procedure of applying the resultant merged images to a display.

45. The method for providing images according to claim 43, wherein said procedure of merging comprises the sub-procedure of image fusion between at least two sensors on the basis of pixel intensity, at the pixel level.

46. The method for providing images according to claim 43, wherein said procedure of merging further comprises the sub-procedure of generating a synthetic colorized image, on the basis of spectral response, at the pixel level.

47. The method for providing images according to claim 43, further comprising the procedure of applying the resultant merged image to a display.

48. The method for providing images according to claim 40, further comprising the procedure of spatial image stabilization based on the reading of at least two accelerometers.

49. The method for providing images according to claim 40, further comprising the procedure of spatial image stabilization based on the reading of at least one gyroscope.

50. The method for providing images according to claim 40, further comprising the procedure of spatial and temporal filtering with respect to the user line-of-sight.

51. The method for providing images according to claim 50, wherein said procedure of spatial and temporal filtering comprises spatial and temporal filtering at the pixel level with respect to the readings of a head line-of-sight reader or an eye line of sight tracker.