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Haptic Interface With Hybrid Actuator for Virtual Tissue Cutting

[+] Author Affiliations
Berk Gonenc

Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD

Hakan Gurocak

Washington State University, Vancouver, WA

Paper No. DETC2015-46846, pp. V01BT02A054; 8 pages
  • ASME 2015 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 1B: 35th Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Boston, Massachusetts, USA, August 2–5, 2015
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division, Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5705-2
  • Copyright © 2015 by ASME


Surgical training is an important and recent application where haptic interfaces are used to enhance the realism of virtual training simulators. Tissue cutting with surgical scissors is a common interaction mode in the simulations. The haptic interface needs to render a range of tissue properties and resistance forces accurately. In this research, we developed a hybrid haptic device made up of a DC servomotor and a magnetorheological (MR) brake. The motor can provide fast dynamic response and compensate for inertia and friction effects of the device. But it cannot supply high force levels and the sensation of stiff interaction with hard tissues such as tendons. On the other hand, the MR-brake can provide very high and stiff interaction forces yet cannot reflect fast dynamics that are encountered as the virtual scissors go through the tissue. Design details of the hybrid actuator and the haptic device are presented. A control scheme was developed to decompose the actuator command signal into two branches considering each actuator’s capabilities. Virtual tissue cutting experiments were conducted using three different scissor types and four types of rat tissue. Results are presented and discussed. Forces in a wider amplitude range compared to just using a DC motor could be generated by the hybrid actuator. It also enabled simulation of multiple scissor types using the same haptic interface due to the extended force amplitude range.

Copyright © 2015 by ASME



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