SCANNER

INTRODUCTION ABOUT SCANNERS
In computing, an image scanner³often abbreviated to just scanner³ is a device that scans images, printed text, handwriting and converts it to a digital image. ´ Common examples found in offices are variations of the desktop (or flatbed) scanner where the document is placed on a glass for scanning.
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Modern scanners typically use a chargecoupled device (CCD) or a Contact Image Sensor (CIS) as the image sensor, whereas older drum scanners use a photomultiplier tube as the image sensor. ´ A rotary scanner, used for high-speed document scanning, is another type of drum scanner, using a CCD array instead of a photomultiplier.
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Most scanners incorporate a special sort of camera made up of Charged-Coupled Devices (CCDs). Each CCD receives light from the image and provided the light is strong enough, will generate an electrical charge. This means that light areas or dots of the image are represented by charged cells and dark areas by uncharged cells. As the paper containing the image moves past the camera during the scanning process, these charges create electrical impulses which are fed into the computer where they are interpreted by the scanning software as part of the image.

BASIC PRINCIPLE OF A SCANNER
The basic principle of a scanner is to ´ analyze an image and ´ process it. ´ Image and text capture (optical character recognition or OCR) allow you to save information to a file on your computer. ´ You can then alter or enhance the image, print it out or use it.
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PARTS OF A TYPICAL FLATBED SCANNER INCLUDE:
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Charge-coupled device (CCD) array Mirrors Scan head Glass plate Lamp Lens Cover Filters Stepper motor Stabilizer bar Belt Power supply Interface port(s) Control circuitry

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S. No. Components 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Stepper Motor Logic Board Scanning Unit/Carriage Transmission Belt Flex Circuit CCD sensors Glass Plate ADC Powers the transmission belt Relays information to and from the scanner and the computer Contains a light source and CCD sensors Moves the scanning unit across the image Carries the CCD information to the logic board Converts measured reflected light into a voltage proportional to the light intensity Allows light to pass from light below glass to image and supports image Analog digital converter unit that changes CCD measured voltage to digital

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The core component of the scanner is the CCD array. CCD is the most common technology for image capture in scanners. CCD is a collection of tiny light-sensitive diodes, which convert photons (light) into electrons (electrical charge). These diodes are called photosites. In a nutshell, each photosite is sensitive to light -- the brighter the light that hits a single photosite, the greater the electrical charge that will accumulate at that site. The image of the document that you scan reaches the CCD array through a series of mirrors, filters and lenses.

EXPLANATION OF HOW SCANNER WORKS:
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The image to be scanned is placed on top of the scanner·s glass plate The computer sends instructions to the logic board about how far the motor is to run and how fast The logic board instructions place the scanning unit into an appropriate position to begin scanning The scanning unit moves across the image to be scanned at a speed designated by the logic board instruction As the scanning unit moves across the image, a light source shines on the image The light strikes the image, reflects, and is then reflected by a series of mirrors to the scanner lens The light passes through the scanner lens and reaches the CCD sensors CCD sensors measure the amount of light reflected through the image and converts the light to an analog voltage The analog voltage is changed to digital values by an ADC ² analog to digital converter The digital signals from the CCDs are sent to the logic board and transmitted back to the computer The information is stored in the computer as an electronic file made up of pixels. The group of pixels is changed into a picture by the scanning software.

CCD ARRAY

THE SCANNING PROCESS
Here are the steps that a scanner goes through when it scans a document: ´ The document is placed on the glass plate and the cover is closed. ´ The inside of the cover in most scanners is flat white, although a few are black. ´ The cover provides a uniform background. ´ Most flatbed scanners allow the cover to be removed for scanning a bulky object, such as a page in a thick book.
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IN THE IMAGE, YOU CAN SEE THE FLUORESCENT LAMP ON TOP OF THE SCAN HEAD.

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A lamp is used to illuminate the document. The lamp in newer scanners is either a cold cathode fluorescent lamp (CCFL) or a xenon lamp, while older scanners may have a standard fluorescent lamp. The entire mechanism (mirrors, lens, filter and CCD array) make up the scan head. The scan head is moved slowly across the document by a belt that is attached to a stepper motor. The scan head is attached to a stabilizer bar to ensure that there is no deviation in the pass. Pass means that the scan head has completed a single complete scan of the document.

THE STABILIZER BAR IS TIGHTLY SECURED TO THE BODY OF THE SCANNER.

The image of the document is reflected by an angled mirror to another mirror. ´ In some scanners, there are only two mirrors while others use a three mirror approach. ´ The last mirror reflects the image onto a lens. ´ The lens focuses the image through a filter on the CCD array.
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STEPPER MOTOR

The filter and lens arrangement vary based on the scanner. ´ Some scanners use a three pass scanning method. ´ Each pass uses a different color filter (red, green or blue) between the lens and CCD array. ´ After the three passes are completed, the scanner software assembles the three filtered images into a single full-color image.
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THE SCANNING PROCESS
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As you begin the scanning process, the scanhead will begin reading the first line of data from your document. After the first line of data is collected, the motor inside your scanner will then move the scanhead to the next line. You will notice a fluorescent light moving inside your scanner's chassis. This light is projected from the lamp, located at the top of the scanhead. Though the clear glass, the light reaches your document and is reflected back to the bottom of the scanhead. This light is then collected by a CCD (Charged Coupled Device), located at the bottom of the scanhead. The CCD will then analyze this incoming light. All the information contained in this light will then be transferred, from the scanner to the computer. Your computer will then take this information and display the image on the screen.

Most scanners today use the single pass method. ´ The lens splits the image into three smaller versions of the original. ´ Each smaller version passes through a color filter (either red, green or blue) onto a section of the CCD array. ´ The scanner combines the data from the three parts of the CCD array into a single full-color image.
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Color scanning can be achieved by a one-pass scanner or a three-pass scanner. ´ A one-pass scanner scans the image once and records all three colors at the same time, while a three-pass scanner makes three passes over the image and records only one color each pass.
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Another imaging array technology that has become popular in inexpensive flatbed scanners is contact image sensor (CIS). CIS replaces the CCD array, mirrors, filters, lamp and lens with rows of red, green and blue light emitting diodes (LEDs). The image sensor mechanism, consisting of 300 to 600 sensors spanning the width of the scan area, is placed very close to the glass plate that the document rests upon. When the image is scanned, the LEDs combine to provide white light. The illuminated image is then captured by the row of sensors. CIS scanners are cheaper, lighter and thinner, but do not provide the same level of quality and resolution found in most CCD scanners.

FLATBED SCANNER
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A flatbed scanner is usually composed of a glass pane (or platen). under which there is a bright light (often xenon or cold cathode fluorescent) which illuminates the pane, and a moving optical array in CCD scanning. CCD-type scanners typically contain three rows (arrays) of sensors with red, green, and blue filters. CIS scanning consists of a moving set of red, green and blue LEDs for illumination and a connected monochromatic photodiode array for light collection. Images to be scanned are placed face down on the glass, an cover is lowered over it, and the sensor array and light source move across the pane, reading the entire area. An image is therefore visible to the detector only because of the light it reflects.

A FLATBED SCANNER. DOCUMENTS OR IMAGES ARE PLACED UNDER THE COVER (SHOWN CLOSED HERE).

HOW TO CONNECT SCANNER TO A COMPUTER
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Scanning the document is only one part of the process. For the scanned image to be useful, it must be transferred from the scanner to an application running on the computer. There are two basic issues: (1) how the scanner is physically connected to the computer and (2) how the application retrieves the information from the scanner. Direct physical connection to a computer The amount of data generated by a scanner can be very large: a 600 DPI(Dots Per Inch) 23 x 28 cm (9"x11") (slightly larger than A4 paper) is about 100 megabytes of data which must be transferred and stored. Recent scanners can generate this volume of data in a matter of seconds, making a fast connection desirable.

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Scanners communicate to their host computer using one of the following physical interfaces, listing from slow to fast: Parallel port - Connecting through a parallel port is the slowest common transfer method. Early scanners had parallel port connections that could not transfer data faster than 70 kilobytes/second. GPIB - General Purpose Interface Bus. Certain drumscanners like the Howtek D4000 featured both a SCSI and GPIB interface. The latter conforms to the IEEE-488 standard, introduced in the mid ·70's. The GPIB-interface has only been used by a few scanner manufactures, mostly serving the DOS/Windows environment. For Apple Macintosh systems, National Instruments provided a NuBus GPIB interface card.

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Small Computer System Interface (SCSI), which is supported by most computers only via an additional SCSI interface card. Some SCSI scanners are supplied together with a dedicated SCSI card for a PC, although any SCSI controller can be used. During the evolution of the SCSI standard speeds increased, with backwards compatibility; a SCSI connection can transfer data at the highest speed which both the controller and the device support. SCSI has been largely replaced by USB and Firewire, one or both of which are directly supported by most computers, and which are easier to set up than SCSI. Universal Serial Bus (USB) scanners can transfer data quickly, and they are easier to use and cheaper than SCSI devices. The early USB 1.1 standard could transfer data at only 1.5 megabytes per second (slower than SCSI), but the later USB 2.0 standard can theoretically transfer up to 60 megabytes per second (although everyday rates are much lower), resulting in faster operation. FireWire is an interface that is much faster than USB 1.1 and comparable to USB 2.0. FireWire speeds are 25, 50, and 100, 400 and 800 megabits per second (but a device may not support all speeds). Also known as: IEEE-1394. Proprietary interfaces were used on some early scanners that used a proprietary interface card rather than a standard interface.

APPLICATIONS PROGRAMMING INTERFACE
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A paint application such as GIMP or Adobe Photoshop must communicate with the scanner. There are many different scanners, and many of those scanners use different protocols. In order to simplify applications programming, some Applications Programming Interfaces ("API") were developed. The API presents a uniform interface to the scanner. This means that the application does not need to know the specific details of the scanner in order to access it directly. For example, Adobe Photoshop supports the TWAIN standard; therefore in theory Photoshop can acquire an image from any scanner that also supports TWAIN.

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