The research on micro/nano scale robotics performed at the Hamlyn Center for Robotic Surgery of Imperial College London was highlighted in a recent article of The Guardian entitled: The innovators: nanoscale devices making big strides in surgery. The development of healthcare technologies is based on the use of a new types of micro tools installed on Imina Technologies’ high precision robots .
The journal writes, “According to the centre’s director, Prof Guang-Zhong Yang, the new smart surgical instruments, effectively handheld robots, will improve efficiency and cut costs. At present, robots in operating theatres are large imposing machines which can be operated by surgeons, be they present or remote. The new smaller handheld instruments allow a surgeon more room to work.” Yang expects a new generation of surgical instruments to be in general use within a decade. Very small manipulators will be used in procedures at human cell level. Yang says: “At the moment, for surgical procedures we still need to make incisions for the instruments but in the future we will probably just use a small needle”.
All images are courtesy of Hamlyn Centre, Imperial College.