Intuitive Surgical. has filed a patent for a system that can generate processed images of an operational scene illuminated by a virtual light source based on captured images and depth maps. The system aims to enhance visualization for display on a screen. GlobalData’s report on Intuitive Surgical gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s company profile on Intuitive Surgical, Surgical robots was a key innovation area identified from patents. Intuitive Surgical's grant share as of January 2024 was 58%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

Virtual light source simulation system for operational scene illumination

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: Intuitive Surgical Inc

A recently filed patent (Publication Number: US20240037721A1) describes a system that includes a memory storing instructions and one or more processors. These processors are configured to execute instructions to perform a process that involves accessing an image captured by an imaging device, accessing a depth map of the operational scene, generating a processed image based on the image and depth map, and providing the processed image for display on a screen. The processed image depicts the operational scene as being illuminated by a virtual light source that is simulated to be illuminating the scene. The system allows for user input to select the position of the virtual light source, with the processed image adjusting accordingly to reflect this user-selected position.

Furthermore, the patent details a method and a computer-readable medium storing instructions that direct a processor to perform a similar process of accessing an image, depth map, generating a processed image illuminated by a virtual light source, and displaying it on a screen. The processed image aims to provide a more consistent and uniform brightness compared to the original image captured by the imaging device. Additionally, the virtual light source is modeled as a single point source positioned at a distance from the operational scene, allowing for a simulated open surgery lighting scenario in the context of minimally invasive surgical procedures. The method also includes a universal brightness adjustment step, where brightness values for pixels of the processed image are multiplied by a universal lighting coefficient to enhance the overall visual representation on the display screen.

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GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies