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      Medical devices to enhance haptic capability

      Impact

      Science Impact, Ltd.

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          Abstract

          The technologies under development at the Graduate School in Japan’s Hiroshima University, are aimed in the first instance at medical use, but have a wide variety of long-term applications. The Medical Devices to Enhance Haptic Capability project has resulted in innovations that enhance touch sensitivity and feedback for surgeons, and augment perceptions while reducing muscle fatigue for wearers of the team’s Sensorimotor Enhancing Suit (SEnS).Associate Professors Yuichi Kurita and Hiroyuki Egi, from the schools of Engineering and Gastroenterological and Transplant Surgery respectively, have combined their skills and those of collaborators at the Georgia Institute of Technology in the US, Hokkaido University, Japan, and specialist commercial firms, to produce the PZT Actuator for surgeons and the SEnS wearable technology. Both developments are based on the team’s research into haptic modelling and the connection between humans’ sensory and motor functions.Kurita sees these innovations having applications in a wide range of industries: ‘Our research has relevance in driverless transport, healthcare, sports and entertainment, to name a few. I believe understanding the linkages between sensory and motor functions of humans will enable comfortable man-machine interfaces and augment human performance. Our technology will be applicable to any robot systems that can recognise the user’s intent in order to provide a supporting personal service.’ Egi is focused more on the medical applications and feels anything that: ‘reduces muscle fatigue and provides more nuanced information to surgeons, will help to improve the quality of surgery and outcomes for patients’.The technologies under development at the Graduate School in Japan’s Hiroshima University, are aimed in the first instance at medical use, but have a wide variety of long-term applications. The Medical Devices to Enhance Haptic Capability project has resulted in innovations that enhance touch sensitivity and feedback for surgeons, and augment perceptions while reducing muscle fatigue for wearers of the team’s Sensorimotor Enhancing Suit (SEnS).Associate Professors Yuichi Kurita and Hiroyuki Egi, from the schools of Engineering and Gastroenterological and Transplant Surgery respectively, have combined their skills and those of collaborators at the Georgia Institute of Technology in the US, Hokkaido University, Japan, and specialist commercial firms, to produce the PZT Actuator for surgeons and the SEnS wearable technology. Both developments are based on the team’s research into haptic modelling and the connection between humans’ sensory and motor functions.Kurita sees these innovations having applications in a wide range of industries: ‘Our research has relevance in driverless transport, healthcare, sports and entertainment, to name a few. I believe understanding the linkages between sensory and motor functions of humans will enable comfortable man-machine interfaces and augment human performance. Our technology will be applicable to any robot systems that can recognise the user’s intent in order to provide a supporting personal service.’ Egi is focused more on the medical applications and feels anything that: ‘reduces muscle fatigue and provides more nuanced information to surgeons, will help to improve the quality of surgery and outcomes for patients’.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Impact
          impact
          Science Impact, Ltd.
          2398-7073
          March 29 2018
          March 29 2018
          : 2018
          : 2
          : 21-23
          Article
          10.21820/23987073.2018.2.21
          © 2018

          This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

          Earth & Environmental sciences, Medicine, Computer science, Agriculture, Engineering

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