Patent Number: 7,046,295

Title: System and method for rotatably positioning a camera or similar article about two orthogonal axes

Abstract: A positioning device is provided for rotatably positioning a camera or other article about orthogonal rotational axes. The positioning device includes a carriage supported for rotation about a horizontal axis by a yoke. The yoke is in turn rotatably coupled to a base assembly for rotation of the yoke about a vertical axis. Rotation of the camera about the horizontal and vertical axes is respectively effected by first and second voice coil actuators, each comprising a pair of magnets and at least one coil to which current is supplied. The amplitude and direction of the current supplied to the coil determines the speed and direction of rotation of the camera. The second voice coil actuator preferably includes a coil assembly comprising two opposed coils. This design overcomes the angular range limitations associated with prior art voice coil actuators and enables rotation of the camera about an extended angular range. The device can be advantageously utilized for adjustment of the pan and tilt angles of a video camera in a conferencing system.

Inventors: Hovanky; Thao D. (Austin, TX)

Assignee: Polycom, Inc.

International Classification: H04N 5/225 (20060101)

Expiration Date: 5/16/02018