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Dokumentenidentifikation EP1324024 07.08.2003
EP-Veröffentlichungsnummer 1324024
Titel MIKROSKOPEINRICHTUNG MIT THERMISCHER LINSE
Anmelder Kanagawa Academy of Science and Technology, Kawasaki, JP
Erfinder Kitamori, Takehiko, Tokyo 113-0033, JP;
Hibara, Akihide, Kita-ku, Tokyo 114-0011, JP;
Tokeshi, Manabu, Kawasaki-shi, Kanagawa 213-0011, JP
Vertreter derzeit kein Vertreter bestellt
Vertragsstaaten AT, BE, CH, CY, DE, DK, ES, FI, FR, GB, GR, IE, IT, LI, LU, MC, NL, PT, SE, TR
Sprache des Dokument EN
EP-Anmeldetag 07.09.2001
EP-Aktenzeichen 019635259
WO-Anmeldetag 07.09.2001
PCT-Aktenzeichen PCT/JP01/07794
WO-Veröffentlichungsnummer 0002021113
WO-Veröffentlichungsdatum 14.03.2002
EP-Offenlegungsdatum 02.07.2003
Veröffentlichungstag im Patentblatt 07.08.2003
IPC-Hauptklasse G01N 25/16
IPC-Nebenklasse G01N 37/00   

Beschreibung[en]
TECHNICAL FIELD

The invention of this application relates to a thermal lens microscope device. More specifically, the invention of this application relates to a desktop type palmtop size thermal lens microscope device capable of executing highly accurate ultramicroanalysis in a micro space and allowing convenient measurement at any places.

BACKGROUND ART

Conventionally, the integration technique for executing the chemical reaction in a micro space has been attracting attention from the viewpoint of the high speed property of the chemical reaction, the reaction with amicro amount, the on sight analysis, or the like so that study is being promoted vigorously worldwide.

The integration technique for the chemical reaction is discussed also by the present inventors so that a photothermal conversion absorption analysis method utilizing a thermal lens effect generated by the light absorption in a sample in a liquid in a micro channel in a device using a glass substrate, or the like has been established so as to pave the way for the practical use.

However, according to the analysis method by the thermal lens microscope as mentioned above provided by the present inventors, the configuration of an analysis appliance enabling the same includes for example, a light source, a measuring part, an optical system of a detecting part (photo electric conversion part), or the like provided complicatedly as a system so as to be bulky, and thus the portability is lacked. Therefore, at the time of executing the analysis or the chemical reaction using the thermal lens microscope system, it has been the factor for limiting places or operations thereof.

In view of the circumstances, since the analysis by the thermal lens microscope system has many advantages such as a wide range of analyzable subjects, miniaturization with a high versatility has strongly been expected.

Then, the present inventors have developed a desktop thermal lens microscope device comprising small size laser light sources as an excitation light source and a probe light source, with the excitation light source, the probe light source and a thermal lens microscope optical system mounted and integrated in a single body so as to provide a compact structure. According to the desktop thermal lens microscope device, all the elements are mounted and integrated in a single body like as desktop type microscope so as to successfully miniaturize the conventional huge microscope to a desktop type.

However, for the desktop thermal lens microscope device, further improvement has been desired.

That is miniaturization to one with further portability. According to the miniaturization, the mobility of the ultrasensitive analysis of an ultramicro chemical substance in the medical diagnosis or the environment measurement can dramatically be improved so as to enable the ultramicroanalysis microscope having the excellent spatial resolution and the quantitative analysis ability.

The invention of this application has been achieved in view of the above-mentioned circumstances, and an object thereof is to provide a novel palmtop size thermal lens microscope device having the portability, and enabling the ultrasensitive analysis of an ultramicro chemical substance in the medical diagnosis or the environment measurement.

DISCLOSURE OF THE INVENTION

For solving the above-mentioned problems, the invention of this application provides firstly a thermal lens microscope device, characterized in that at least a part of an excitation light source, a part of a probe light source and a part of a thermal lens microscope optical system are provided integrally in a device main body comprising an analyzing cell and a substrate for supporting the same.

Moreover, the invention of this application provides secondly a thermal lens microscope device, characterized in that at least a part of a detecting system and a part of a detecting optical system are provided integrally in a device main body comprising an analyzing cell and a substrate for supporting the same. The invention of this application provides thirdly the thermal lens microscope device according to the second invention, characterized in that a part or the entirety of a signal processing system and an electric circuit for transmitting and receiving the detection results are provided integrally in the device main body. The invention of this application provides fourthly the thermal lens microscope device according to the second or third invention, characterized in that at least a part of the excitation light source, a part of the probe light source and a part of the thermal lens microscope optical system are provided integrally in the device main body.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

  • Fig. 1 is a plan view, a front view and a bottom view showing an example of this invention.
  • Fig. 2 is a front view showing another example of this invention.

In the figures, the numerals represent the following.

1
analyzing cell
2A
upper substrate
2B
lower substrate
3
excitation light source
4
probe light source
5
lens system
6
dichroic mirror
7
prism
8
objective lens
9
inlet
10
outlet
11
micro channel
12
prism
13
filter
14
optical detector

BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION

The invention of this application has the above-mentioned characteristics. Hereinafter, embodiments thereof will be explained.

As mentioned above, the thermal lens microscope devices of the invention of this application is characterized in that in a device main body comprising an analyzing cell and a substrate for supporting the same:

  • <A> at least a part of an excitation light source, a part of a probe light source and a part of a thermal lens microscope optical system;
  • <B> at least a part of a detecting system and a part of a detecting optical system are provided integrally;
   both of <A> and <B> or one of them are provided integrally, and furthermore, <C> a part or the entirety of a signal processing system and an electric circuit for transmitting and receiving the detection results are provided integrally with <B>.

Needless to say, the thermal lens microscope is a system for detecting the substances in a sample by inputting an excitation light and a probe light for inputting the probe light to a thermal lens formed according to the irradiation of the excitation light into the sample, and measuring the probe light diffusion by the thermal lens.

According to the thermal lens microscope device of this invention as mentioned above, as conventionally proposed by the present inventors, a light transmissible cell substrate such as a glass, a silicon and a plastic with micro, fine channels (liquid passage paths), ports (liquid storage parts), or the like formed by etching, is used as an analyzing cell. Then, a substrate for supporting the analyzing cell can be made of a similar light transmissible material such that the analyzing cell is supported on one side thereof, or it is supported by clamping from both the upper and lower sides. The supporting forms may be varied.

Then, the above-mentioned <A>, <B> and <C> may be integrated partially or entirely with the analyzing cell or the substrate for supporting the same. Here, "integrated" means that they are not disposed outside the analyzing cell or the substrate with a space disposed therebetween, but they are abutted on or embedded in the inside or the surface of the analyzing cell or the substrate.

Fig. 1 is a plan view, a front view and a bottom view showing an example of a thermal lens microscope device of this invention. For example, as shown as an example in Fig. 1, the device main body has an analyzing cell (1) clamped by an upper substrate (2A) and a lower substrate (2B), and a lens system (5) including a beam expander, a collimator lens, or the like, an optical system of the thermal lens microscope including a dichroic mirror (6), a prism (7), or the like are provided integrally with the upper substrate (2A) together with an excitation light source (3) and a probe light source (4). An objective lens (8) may further be integrated immediately below the prism (7) by embedding.

Moreover, in the upper substrate (2A), a sample or reaction chemical inlet(9) and a liquid outlet (10) are formed so as to each communicate with a micro channel (11) provided in the analyzing cell (1).

In contrast, in the lower substrate (2B), a detecting optical system including a prism (12), a mirror, a filter (13), or the like, and an optical detector (14) are provided integrally.

Fig. 2 shows an example in which the above-mentioned elements of the thermal lens microscope system including the excitation light source (3) are provided integrally by embedding the same in the upper substrate (2A) and the lower substrate (2B) instead of providing the same integrally on the surface of the upper substrate (2A) and the lower substrate (2B) as in the above-mentioned example of Fig. 1. According to such various kinds of the configurations, the thermal lens microscope devices of this invention can be provided.

Of course, this invention includes those having a part of the elements such as a light source and a detector disposed outside the upper and lower substrates (2A), (2B). The system configuration can be changed according to the use condition, the use environment, or the like.

In any case, for the excitation light source (3), various kinds of small size laser light sources such as a small size semiconductor laser and a semiconductor laser excitation solid laser can be used. The excitation light outputted from the excitation light source (3) is for example modulated by a chopper and furthermore it is radiated from a beam expander as a plane wave.

In contrast, the probe light outputted from the probe light source (4) as a small size laser light source like the excitation light source (3) is radiated as a parallel light beam flux for example by a collimator lens so as to be synthesized by the dichroic mirror (6) concentrically with the excitation light.

The synthesized light made from the excitation light and the probe light passes through the prism (7) and the objective lens (8) so as to be directed to a liquid sample in the analyzing cell (1). Inside the sample, a thermal lens is formed based on the photothermal conversion phenomenon by a part of the excitation light comprising the synthesized light, and the probe light passed through the thermal lens is diffused so as to transmit through the sample together with the excitation light, which has not been concerned with the photothermal conversion. In principle, the excitation light is influenced by the thermal lens, however, only to a slight degree compared with the probe light.

The sample is tested in the above-mentioned injecting way. For example, it is injected independently from for example a complexing agent, an immune response reagent, or the like. According to the reaction in the micro channel (11), the micro component in the sample can be detected by the above-mentioned thermal lens microscope.

For example, as to the quantitative analysis of a nitrogen oxide, a nitrogen oxide in the cigarette smoke is oxidized and absorbed in an alkaline (pH 13) aqueous solution of a hydrogen peroxide as a nitrous acid ion and reacting the same with an N-1-naphthyl ethylene diamine as a color developing reagent so as to develop a reddish purple color (peak absorbance wavelength 544 nm). This can be detected by the thermal lens microscope by the light irradiation to the micro channel (11). As the excitation light, a semiconductor YAG laser (second harmonic) having a 532 nm wavelength and a 100 mW output can be used. Moreover, as the probe light, a semiconductor laser having a 680 nm wavelength and a 5 mW output can be used.

INDUSTRIAL APPLICABILITY

As heretofore explained in detail, according to the invention of this application, a small size portable microscope for the ultramicroanalys is having the excellent spatial resolution and quantitative analysis ability can be 'provided.


Anspruch[en]
  1. A thermal lens microscope device, wherein at least a part of an excitation light source, a part of a probe light source and a part of a thermal lens microscope optical system are provided integrally in a device main body comprising an analyzing cell and a substrate for supporting the same.
  2. A thermal lens microscope device, wherein at least a part of a detecting system and a part of a detecting optical system are provided integrally in a device main body comprising an analyzing cell and a substrate for supporting the same.
  3. The thermal lens microscope device according to claim 2, wherein a part or the entirety of a signal processing system and an electric circuit for transmitting and receiving the detection results are provided integrally in the device main body.
  4. The thermal lens microscope device according to claim 2 or 3, wherein at least a part of the excitation light source, a part of the probe light source and a part of the thermal lens microscope optical system are provided integrally in the device main body.
Amended claims under Art. 19.1 PCT
  • 1. A thermal lens microscope device, wherein at least a part of an excitation light source (3), a part of a probe light source (4) and a part of a thermal lens microscope optical system are provided integrally in a device main body comprising an analyzing cell (1) and a substrate (2A, 2B) for supporting the same.
  • 2. A thermal lens microscope device, wherein at least a part of a detecting system and a part of a detecting optical system are provided integrally in a device main body comprising an analyzing cell (1) and a substrate (2A, 2B) for supporting the same.
  • 3. The thermal lens microscope device according to claim 2, wherein a part or the entirety of a signal processing system and an electric circuit for transmitting and receiving the detection results are provided integrally in the device main body.
  • 4. The thermal lens microscope device according to claim 2 or 3, wherein at least a part of an excitation light source (3), a part of a probe light source (4) and a part of the thermal lens microscope optical system are provided integrally in the device main body.






IPC
A Täglicher Lebensbedarf
B Arbeitsverfahren; Transportieren
C Chemie; Hüttenwesen
D Textilien; Papier
E Bauwesen; Erdbohren; Bergbau
F Maschinenbau; Beleuchtung; Heizung; Waffen; Sprengen
G Physik
H Elektrotechnik

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