Palpating surgical gripper

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When manipulating physical objects, particular tactile qualities are appreciated via particular motions. E.g. rubbing an object gives texture information, while squeezing or poking determines hardness. These motions are referred to as exploratory procedures.

Minimally invasive surgical (MIS) tools are normally based on simple scissor or pliers mechanism. Such limited motion means that if these tools were haptically enabled (e.g. with pressure sensors), they would not be capable of appreciating most haptic properties.

In this research we are designing and evaluating a novel MIS gripper that has been mechanically designed to replicate the most useful exploratory procedures for haptic manipulation and exploration in surgical scenarios. This design has been based on data collected from surgeons performing palpation tasks. Scale and complexity of manufacture has been a major consideration throughout the design process. 

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Theme Leader

Team Members

  • Dr Adam Spiers - BRL
  • Prof. Tony Pipe – BRL

Contact Details

Professor Sanja Dogramadzi
Bristol Robotics Laboratory,
University of the West of England,
Coldharbour Lane, 
Bristol, BS16 1QY
Telephone: +44 (0)117 32 81301
E-mail: Professor Sanja Dogramadzi

Page last updated 13 April 2017