GB2417570A - Deployable cylindrical panoramic projection apparatus - Google Patents

Deployable cylindrical panoramic projection apparatus Download PDF

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Publication number
GB2417570A
GB2417570A GB0418995A GB0418995A GB2417570A GB 2417570 A GB2417570 A GB 2417570A GB 0418995 A GB0418995 A GB 0418995A GB 0418995 A GB0418995 A GB 0418995A GB 2417570 A GB2417570 A GB 2417570A
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United Kingdom
Prior art keywords
projection apparatus
base
apparatus according
panoramic
panoramic projection
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Withdrawn
Application number
GB0418995A
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GB0418995D0 (en
Inventor
Simon Richard Daniel
Christopher Verity Wright
Current Assignee (The listed assignees may be inaccurate. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the list.)
Daniel Simon Richard
Original Assignee
Daniel Simon Richard
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Filing date
Publication date
Application filed by Daniel Simon Richard filed Critical Daniel Simon Richard
Priority to GB0418995A priority Critical patent/GB2417570A/en
Publication of GB0418995D0 publication Critical patent/GB0418995D0/en
Publication of GB2417570A publication Critical patent/GB2417570A/en
Application status is Withdrawn legal-status Critical

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Classifications

    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ANALOGOUS TECHNIQUES USING WAVES OTHER THAN OPTICAL WAVES; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03BAPPARATUS OR ARRANGEMENTS FOR TAKING PHOTOGRAPHS OR FOR PROJECTING OR VIEWING THEM; APPARATUS OR ARRANGEMENTS EMPLOYING ANALOGOUS TECHNIQUES USING WAVES OTHER THAN OPTICAL WAVES; ACCESSORIES THEREFOR
    • G03B37/00Panoramic or wide-screen photography; Photographing extended surfaces, e.g. for surveying; Photographing internal surfaces, e.g. of pipe
    • G03B37/06Panoramic or wide-screen photography; Photographing extended surfaces, e.g. for surveying; Photographing internal surfaces, e.g. of pipe involving anamorphosis
    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ANALOGOUS TECHNIQUES USING WAVES OTHER THAN OPTICAL WAVES; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03BAPPARATUS OR ARRANGEMENTS FOR TAKING PHOTOGRAPHS OR FOR PROJECTING OR VIEWING THEM; APPARATUS OR ARRANGEMENTS EMPLOYING ANALOGOUS TECHNIQUES USING WAVES OTHER THAN OPTICAL WAVES; ACCESSORIES THEREFOR
    • G03B21/00Projectors or projection-type viewers; Accessories therefor
    • G03B21/54Accessories
    • G03B21/56Projection screens
    • G03B21/58Projection screens collapsible, e.g. foldable; of variable area
    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ANALOGOUS TECHNIQUES USING WAVES OTHER THAN OPTICAL WAVES; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03BAPPARATUS OR ARRANGEMENTS FOR TAKING PHOTOGRAPHS OR FOR PROJECTING OR VIEWING THEM; APPARATUS OR ARRANGEMENTS EMPLOYING ANALOGOUS TECHNIQUES USING WAVES OTHER THAN OPTICAL WAVES; ACCESSORIES THEREFOR
    • G03B21/00Projectors or projection-type viewers; Accessories therefor
    • G03B21/54Accessories
    • G03B21/56Projection screens
    • G03B21/60Projection screens characterised by the nature of the surface
    • G03B21/62Translucent screens

Abstract

A panoramic projection apparatus 1 is disclosed having a compact stored configuration and a deployed screen configuration that is generally cylindrical and is suitable for operation with at least one projector unit 4, where said cylindrical screen supports an interchangeable base 3 that can support a central domed mirror 12 that reflects light to form a 360 degree panoramic projection that is viewable internally or externally, or a flat translucent base forming a circular projection screen or a hemi-spherical base screen, and said base may support a directional speaker unit 17 and lamp unit 18. Computational algorithmic and optical means are used to transform the source projection image to form the appropriate curved surface projection. The overall device mounted or hung from a ceiling or self supported via a rigid expandable frame, and is suitable for ornamental, information or 3D display purposes.

Description

24 1 7570

DEPLOYABLE CYLINDRICAL PANORAMIC PROJECTION APPARATUS

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1) Field ofthe Invention

This invention relates to a novel panoramic projection apparatus for use with a single projector unit that can be easily stored and mounted from a ceiling and forms a deployed drop-down preferably cylindrical display capable of showing circular, 2D panoramic or hemi-spherical image projections, and being optionally combined with a lamp and directional speaker, such that the device can be applied in retail situations for graphical display, in-store price and product information, enabling consumers to view an image from a distance or view and hear information when standing within a zone directly beneath the device.

2) Description ofthe Prior Art

Prior art generally relates to large-scale projection means suitable for Cinema, Exhibition or industrial and conference curved 2D and 3D panoramic or panospheric projection apparatus, generally using multiple projector units. Few examples address the home and retail need of compact and deployable devices or those simply using one projector, suitable geometry and algorithmic means for transforming images.

By way of example US 4,885,878 by Wuu discloses a 3D Movie theatre with large screen, US 6,O03,998 by Hilaire discloses a projection apparatus using multiple concentric spherical mirrors, US 5,920,376 by Bruckstein discloses optical parabolic mirror considerations. US 5,539,483, US 6,128,143 and US 6,195,204 by Nalwa discloses a panoramic viewing system with multiple cameras with various pyramid/octahedral type mirror arrangements, similarly US 5,657,073 by Henley provides a further multiple projector display. US 6,220,709 by Hegar discloses a generic 3D projection device with US 6,669, 346 by Metcalfdescribing a large scale stadium apparatus for forming a composite curved image with multiple projectors and US 5,130794 by Ritchey a portable projection apparatus. US 5,760,826 by Nayar discloses a dome based lens imaging system and US 6,429,418, by Chahl et al an improved imaging system for capturing photos in a panoramic form.

In terms of deployable screens, most prior approaches use a linear roll bar supporting a flat sheet screen that can be un-wound manually or electrically, and can be mounted in a ceiling, or used in combination with a support frame such as a tripod.

To the best of the applicant's knowledge, the prior art, whilst suggesting some features and numerous variations of flat and curved projection apparatus, few disclose apparatus suitable for creating cylindrical images from a single projector unit. For example none of the prior art examined discloses a cylindrical apparatus suitable to be viewed externally or internally, say from underneath when mounted on the ceiling, nor the ability to substitute the base for a circular or hemispherical projection, nor the overall collapse mechanism between a stored and deployed configuration. Nor does the prior art disclose combining a ceiling mounted screen with lamp and speaker device to enable localized exhibition or retail information and sound display.

SUI\,fMARY OF THE INVENTION The main object ofthe present invention is to provide a cylindrical panoramic projection apparatus suitable for mounting on a ceiling and having a compact stored and portable configuration and easily deployed configuration, where a panoramic image is created from a single projection device by means of a base supporting a domed mirror enabling the image to be viewed from inside, or when standing directly beneath the cylinder, or viewed from the side. Or where said base can be interchanged with a hemisphere or circle to enable alternate projection modes.

The panoramic display apparatus of the present invention, in a preferred embodiment has a compact storage configuration and a deployed configuration and comprises a preferably circular central unit capable of being mounted on a ceiling and supporting a recessed area suitable for holding or sliding in a projection device such as a slide or LCD projector, a mirror suitable for reflecting the image downwards or hinged to be suitable for side-ways projection, a stepper motor attached to a central pulley connected to a plurality of smaller pulleys and wires arranged at the outer ring of the circular unit, where said wires attach to a circular base unit that comprises an equivalent outer ring that reversibly secures a removable base arrangement, and acts as a weight affixed to an outer projection screen secured between this ring and the upper central unit. Where said screen is a translucent cylinder and is formed preferably from a highly stretchable elastic material or is comprised of layered sub-cylinders affixed in a telescopic manner similar to a roman blind, or is formed as a high regular polygon comprised of a plurality of straight edges being themselves simple sheets secured to a plurality of roll bars arranged in a polygon arrangement on the upper central unit. Said base arrangement generally being a transparent 'O' shaped circular plastic material supporting a mirrored dome at the centre, and supporting a lamp and directional speaker on the underside, where said wires may preferably carry a low voltage power supply for said central lamp, and optionally electrical connectivity for speaker and sensor components. Where said dome serves to reflect a suitably computed and projected source image onto the outer cylinder forming a 2D panoramic image that can be viewed when standing inside, or underneath the cylinder, or from the side. Where said base may also be a translucent disc suitable for viewing a projected circular image or may be a hemisphere, suitable for projecting a world map or data visualization.

Where said base preferably supports a central sensor, such as in the centre of the dome, that can be used for monitoring the focus quality of a test image, and preferably links to a sensor in the support wires to provide control data dynamically to the projector to adjust and correct the image for the deployed cylinder height. Where said correction could take place by varying the deployed cylinder height using the stepper motor, or by optical means such as by moving the mirror or via additional optical components, in the lens optics of the projection device, or as a software transformation of the source image.

Said projected images generally being formed as angular 'fisheye' or radial panoramic images, that appear to represent a tyre or 'donought' shape in their Cartesian co-ordinate form, that have either been captured directly by using a fisheye lens or panoramic camera, or have been computed artificially and transformed to represent a panoramic image. Where said image appears distorted in the Cartesian form where multiple rows, are compressed and aliased due to the resolution limits of the source camera sensor or projection array. The projected image typically having a resolution which has approximately a quarter of the rows of an equivalent square source image resolution, but has a higher horizontal resolution. Said source image typically being linear and having up to a 10:1 aspect ratio.

A benefit ofthe dome projection approach is that source images could be captured directly by using a camera filming directly offa smaller dome arranged with the equivalent geometry or with a fish- eye lens, such that the overall panoramic projection could be recreated directly without computational means, simply by varying the spread ofthe source projector and dome to lens distance by adjusting the cable lengths.

Said overall device being mountable in a ceiling directly by fastening or could optionally be positioned on a floor with a retractable means such as a telescopic tube, for extending and supporting the base unit. Where the device is mounted in a ceiling, the device forms a short cylinder in the stored position, where the base unit and mirrored dome abut the projector unit when stored, and is reversibly deployed by means ofturning on a stepper motor, to unwind the support wires and allow the base unit to be lowered, which in turns pulls the stored cylindrical screen, or stretches the elastic material so that it forms a cylinder when fully deployed, preferably at intermediary points as well as when fully deployed.

A key benefit of the ceiling mounting, is that the overall device lends itself to retail applications such as by hanging in a ceiling above areas of a shop, or above a waiting area of a travel agent, or above a restaurant table, such that promotional information or general atmosphere images could be displayed. Of particular benefit is the combination with lamp and speaker, such that the device also serves for illumination and can provide directional sound within a cone directly beneath the device.

This could provide a method of zoning parts of a retail outlet, say a record store, to provide visual information on a particular product as well as appropriate audio. This could be applied for a top 40 music chart application. Similarly a plurality of devices could be used to create an interesting ceiling installation, where the cylinders dynamically change height, show variable colours and images when deployed, helping to attract customers to different products and offerings, or just for decorative benefits in public spaces. Said devices can similarly display ticker information or text moving around them, and have the advantage that they can be viewed from a variety of viewing angles unlike traditional 2D displays. A benefit of the modular approach to the base panels is that it would allow stores to easily upgrade or change the display to vary and create new effects.

In a further embodiment the mirror on the central unit which would be positioned at fcrty-five degrees could support further hinged mirrors arranged to project the source image in a direction approximately parallel to the projector lens, and by means of a suitably positioned slot in the outer cylinder enable an image to be projected onto a nearby surface or flat projection screen. This would provide benefits, say in a domestic or office application, where a projection device and apparatus could be attached and stored on a ceiling when not un use, used for ornamental panoramic display or visual information in some modes, or used for standard 2D flat projection when required.

With the advent of accessible wireless and broadband internet connectivity, said panoramic projection apparatus could dynamically link live to on-line broadcast services directly configured as panoramic source images. This could include news services, alternate camera angles say for sports matches, weather updates, as well as ornamental and decorative broadcast feeds. This could be particularly relevant for advertising and information services in retail and office applications.

The device could similarly be configured to show panoramic photograph images from a datacard such as flash card, or USB memory stick device, or by wireless connectivity to a nearby computing device.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The accompanying drawings illustrate presently preferred embodiments ofthe present invention and together with the detailed description serve to explain the principles of the present invention.

FIG.IA shows a three dimensional view ofthe panoramic display apparatus in a deployed configuration as it might appear hanging from a ceiling, with the outer screen shown as transparent for clarity. FIG 1 B shows the equivalent view from above showing the upper surface of the central unit.

FIG 2A shows a three dimensional view ofthe panoramic display in its stored collapsed configuration. FIG 2B shows an illustration of a panoramic image being displayed on the cylindrical screen as it might appear from the side, and viewed from underneath through the transparent base.

FIG 2C shows an equivalent view from above.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

A preferred embodiment ofthe invention will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawings herein: Referring now to FIG 1 A and I B which shows a three dimensional view of the overall panoramic projection apparatus I in its deployed configuration and comprising an upper central unit 2 supporting a base unit 3 by means of wires I I, where said central unit 2 is capable of being attached to a ceiling by means of securing holes 10 and is surrounded by a skirt 21, and has a recess 4 for holding a projector unit 5, such as a slide or LCD projector, which can be accessed from above, or slid laterally, and projects an image 14 onto a forty-five degree mirror 6 onto a mirrored dome 12 which is supported on the base unit 3, such that it forms a cylindrical panoramic image on an outer cylindrical screen 15. Where said wires I I are affixed in the central unit 2 around a plurality of pulleys 9 and a central spindle 8 that is attached to an electric motor 7 or stepper motor for controlled descent, and is connected by means of an electrical control wire 19 to the projector unit 5.

Where said projector unit lens 20 can dynamically adjust the focus of the image in response to a test image projected onto the centre of the dome 12 and sensor 16, to correct the image to correspond to the deployed height. FIG IB shows a similar view from above showing the pulley mechanism in more detail, and with the cylindrical screen 15 removed for clarity.

Said base 3 supports a central lamp 18 that preferably uses low voltage power that could optionally be provided by alternate support wires I 1, and also contains a directional speaker 17 arranged as a disc and suitable for creating a cone of sound directly beneath the apparatus, as might be useful in a retail or exhibition application. Said base 3 being interchangeable with at least a translucent circular panel, or a larger convex hemi-sphere dome.

Said projected image 14 is shown as a concentric disc, and is typical of a computed panoramic image or could be formed directly by using a similar domed optical arrangement to capture a source image.

Referring now to FIG 2A which shows the overall panoramic projection apparatus in its stored and collapsed configuration as it might appear when the wires 11 are fully retracted and wrapped around the central spindle 8, where the outer cylindrical screen 15 being formed of elastic material or as a series of concentric cylinders, has retracted and is stored behind the skirt 21 of the central unit 2.

Referring now to FIG 2B which shows the overall panoramic projection apparatus I in its deployed cylindrical configuration as it might appear when displaying an image 13 or movie. Where the image is visible on the outer surface as well as on the inner surface, as might be seen by standing directly beneath the device. Said image forming a panoramic image 13 when viewed from within, and forming the equivalent of a panoramic reflection when viewed externally (such as might be imagined by placing a large mirrored cylinder in a space and viewing the reflected landscape). Said display could also show non-panoramic images such as scrolling text, data visualization or animations arranged to be shown as cylindrical images, as might be suitable in a retail application for product and service information. The device itself also functioning optionally as a light, say suitable for placing above a waiting area in a travel agent or airport, above a restaurant table, or for lighting effects in an entertainment location or audio visual effects in an exhibition.

Although the invention is described and illustrated with reference to one preferred embodiment of a panoramic projection apparatus, X is expressly understood that it is in no way limited to the disclosure of such preferred embodiments, but is capable of numerous modifications within the scope ofthe claims. By way of example the device could be implemented with a mechanically extendable support strut, such that it could be mounted on the floor, and used as a portable device suitable for exhibitions, could be implemented at a variety of scales, say suitable for larger display above a conference stand or could support a more complex arrangement of several parabolic mirrors to enable combined cylinder and end base display.

Claims (15)

  1. What is claimed is: 1. A panoramic projection apparatus having a compact storage and cylindrical deployed configuration comprising, a generally circular shaped central unit, capable of being mounted on a ceiling with a recessed area for fastening a projector device and a mirror arrangement for perpendicular projection where said central unit supports an electrical and mechanical means to retract wires that are affixed to a compressible outer cylindrical projection surface and an outer base ring that can support interchangeable base units
  2. 2. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claim 1 where the base unit supports a mirrored dome that acts to project a panoramic source image onto the outer cylinder forming a panoramic projection that can be viewed from underneath via a transparent base or from the side
  3. 3. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims I and 2 where said base is a translucent disc capable of showing a circular projection
  4. 4. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims I to 3 where said base is a convex hemisphere suitable for showing a projected image with wide depth of field
  5. 5. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims I to 4 where said base unit supports a lamp unit, connected preferably to a low voltage power supply via the
    retractable wires
  6. 6. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims 1 to 5 where said base unit supports a directional speaker capable of creating a focused zone of sound beneath the device
  7. 7. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims I to 6 where said retractable wire mechanism comprises an electric motor attached to a spindle which supports coiled wires that pass over a plurality of pulleys arranged at the outer edge of the central unit.
  8. 8. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims 1 to 7 where said stepper motor or an electrical sensor provides control data to the projector unit indicating how far the cylinder has extended
  9. 9. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims I to 8 where a focus sensor on the base unit provides a control data means to the projector unit to validate whether a sub section of an image is in focus
  10. 10. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims 1 to 9 where further mirror means enable horizontal projection of the source image onto a nearby surface or display via a slot in the outer screen.
  11. I 1. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims I to 10 where computational algorithmic means are used to adjust the source image radial geometry to be appropriate for the geometry and chosen base of the display device
  12. 12. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims I to I I where optical means are used to adjust to adjust the source image radial geometry to be appropriate geometry and chosen base of the display device
  13. 13. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims I to 12 where a plurality of devices are mounted in a ceiling in a retail environment for the purposes of providing product and service information in preferable combination with appropriate audio.
  14. 14. A panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims I to 13 in combination with an on-line broadcast service providing source images of appropriate aspect ratio and radial geometry to be easily displayed on the apparatus
  15. 15. The ornamental design for a panoramic projection apparatus according to Claims I to 14 and substantially as herein described above and illustrated in the accompanying drawings
GB0418995A 2004-08-25 2004-08-25 Deployable cylindrical panoramic projection apparatus Withdrawn GB2417570A (en)

Priority Applications (1)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
GB0418995A GB2417570A (en) 2004-08-25 2004-08-25 Deployable cylindrical panoramic projection apparatus

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Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
GB0418995A GB2417570A (en) 2004-08-25 2004-08-25 Deployable cylindrical panoramic projection apparatus

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GB2417570A true GB2417570A (en) 2006-03-01

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Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
WO2007003012A1 (en) * 2005-07-05 2007-01-11 Cineware Pty Ltd Audio visual system
GB2456334A (en) * 2008-01-11 2009-07-15 Panascopics Ltd Panoramic optical assembly comprising detachable mirror and storage housing
WO2010108198A1 (en) * 2009-02-24 2010-09-30 Thomas Franz Lechner Screen
CN103439859A (en) * 2013-07-22 2013-12-11 秦皇岛视听机械研究所 Ring screen showing or projecting system unit based on two anisotropy fish-eye lenses

Citations (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4641918A (en) * 1984-12-27 1987-02-10 Eml Environmental Simulations Inc. Portable panoramic theatre
US5115266A (en) * 1989-11-08 1992-05-19 Troje Gerald J Optical system for recording or projecting a panoramic image
WO2000023842A1 (en) * 1998-10-21 2000-04-27 Aleadesign S.R.L. Anamorphic technique for filming and projecting images of 360 degree
US6157018A (en) * 1997-12-13 2000-12-05 Ishiguro; Hiroshi Omni directional vision photograph device
US6226035B1 (en) * 1998-03-04 2001-05-01 Cyclo Vision Technologies, Inc. Adjustable imaging system with wide angle capability
EP1178352A1 (en) * 1996-06-24 2002-02-06 Behere Corporation Method of and apparatus for presenting panoramic images at a local receiver, and a corresponding computer program
US6644816B1 (en) * 1998-06-26 2003-11-11 Evolution Technology N.V. Display device having a cylindrical projection surface such that an image projected onto the inside is visible on the outside

Patent Citations (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4641918A (en) * 1984-12-27 1987-02-10 Eml Environmental Simulations Inc. Portable panoramic theatre
US5115266A (en) * 1989-11-08 1992-05-19 Troje Gerald J Optical system for recording or projecting a panoramic image
EP1178352A1 (en) * 1996-06-24 2002-02-06 Behere Corporation Method of and apparatus for presenting panoramic images at a local receiver, and a corresponding computer program
US6157018A (en) * 1997-12-13 2000-12-05 Ishiguro; Hiroshi Omni directional vision photograph device
US6226035B1 (en) * 1998-03-04 2001-05-01 Cyclo Vision Technologies, Inc. Adjustable imaging system with wide angle capability
US6644816B1 (en) * 1998-06-26 2003-11-11 Evolution Technology N.V. Display device having a cylindrical projection surface such that an image projected onto the inside is visible on the outside
WO2000023842A1 (en) * 1998-10-21 2000-04-27 Aleadesign S.R.L. Anamorphic technique for filming and projecting images of 360 degree

Cited By (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
WO2007003012A1 (en) * 2005-07-05 2007-01-11 Cineware Pty Ltd Audio visual system
GB2456334A (en) * 2008-01-11 2009-07-15 Panascopics Ltd Panoramic optical assembly comprising detachable mirror and storage housing
GB2456334B (en) * 2008-01-11 2012-08-15 Atreides Ltd Panoramic optical assembly
WO2010108198A1 (en) * 2009-02-24 2010-09-30 Thomas Franz Lechner Screen
AT507966B1 (en) * 2009-02-24 2012-10-15 Lechner Thomas Franz screen
CN103439859A (en) * 2013-07-22 2013-12-11 秦皇岛视听机械研究所 Ring screen showing or projecting system unit based on two anisotropy fish-eye lenses

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