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|NDT.net Issue - 2009-06 - NEWS |
|World's first (*) Active industrial videoscope Potential uses include searching in rubble during post-disaster rescue operations.
May 28, 2009 -- An industrial videoscope uses an ultra-compact camera mounted on the tip of a long, thin insertion tube to provide views of spaces where human operators are unable to enter. Typically, these videoscopes are used mainly for internal inspections of automobile and aircraft engines, building maintenance, and other applications where access is limited. However, an equally important application is the use of these instruments in rescue operations at disaster sites.
Normally, the flexible insertion tube can be pushed and navigated through a small opening to the inspection area but in some rescue operations a rough surface or obstacle may prevent further movement. For those situations, Olympus developed a new scope that is capable of propelling itself forward. This new scope, the Active Guide Tube, improves its ability to get into hard-to-reach areas and enhances the chances to find survivors. A scope equipped with this active guide tube is able to move forward under its own power and can be used in a much wider range of search and rescue operations because of its ability to probe deeper into rubble.
Olympus Corporation is the first to commercialize a device of this type. The technology was developed through collaborative research involving Olympus Corporation, Tohoku University and the International Rescue System Institute.
Further information can be found on the following website:
* As of May, 2009. This statement is based on Olympus research and applies to industrial videoscopes.