Gelatin-Prism Image Stabilizer

Gelatin-Prism Image Stabilizer


      Camera shake is a common problem particularly when shooting with long focal-length lenses, or hand holding long exposures.  Compensating for camera shake can increase the system speed by 2-3 ƒ-stops.

      This is a technique proposed and prototyped by Steve Hines in December 1979 to compensate for camera shake in the pitch and yaw directions.  The technique uses an active compensating prism in front of the camera lens with a transparent gelatinous material (ex.: optically clear RTV) between glass plates to act as an active wedge prism to deviate the incoming image, as shown above.


      The camera lens (lower right) views the scene through two glass plates which trap the clear gelatin.


How it works:

      Motion sensors in the camera send signals to actuators to squeeze an edge of the glass plates to create a wedge prism to refract the light to maintain the image position for the camera lens.  

      This stabilization technique was developed at Kodak which did not file a patent application on the idea, and which preceded Canon’s widely used and similar liquid-filled optical image stabilizer (OIS) by several years.

      This technology is not for sale by HinesLab.  This invention is shown only as an example of the type of innovation that clients can expect on a consulting basis. Steve Hines currently offers consulting in the area of image stabilization and optical equipment design, as well as a variety of licensable technology.  


Glendale, California, USA