Robots Manipulate Their Way to New Applications

The next time your in a situation that requires you to enter a hospital operating room, don’t be surprised if you see a robot standing ready among the other surgical equipment. It may just be NeuroArm, the world’s first magnetic resonance imaging-compatible surgical robot, which represents a notable advancement in the field of robotic manipulation.

Performing a surgery requires enhanced spatial resolution to view the parts at a cellular level rather than just the organ level. NeuroArm meets these enhanced spatial resolution requirements and could also assist with operative medicine as well as surgeries.

Research from Frost & Sullivan (www.ti.frost.com) – Emerging Trends in Robotic Manipulation – finds a renewed interest in robotic manipulation, especially with the increasing uncertainties and complexities of the real world.

Within robot manipulation, the focus is slowly moving toward developing remote manipulators. Simultaneously, the industry continues to work toward improving robotic manipulator end effector dexterity and minimizing or reducing the number of configuration parameters without compromising precision positioning with distributed manipulation.

“Perception-based learning for robotic manipulation tasks involving the use of force/torque sensors represents a hot area wherein qualitative spatial reasoning is done from a bottomup perspective,” noted Frost and Sullivan Research Analyst Vishnu Sivadevan. “Much work has also been done on intelligent robotic motion using sensory input for flexible manufacturing.”

Despite such advances as the NeuroArm, there still remains significant technological challenges related to improving manipulation skills such as handeye coordination, transport, alignment and grasping.

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