The VESALIUS Robot Platform (VRP) is a common platform to develop Robot Assisted MIS applications. It is one of the safest and most simple robotic platform to be used for surgical purposes. The RCM motion, always on top of the patient feature and its V-shape design minimize the risk of robot-patient collision. Its non redundant and decoupled degrees of freedom provide the intuitive and exact way of control, even in powerless situation. The adjustment in X and Z axis allows it to cope with variable incision position on patients. (Y axis adjustable by sliding on the rail of operating table). Its high payload enables additional instruments, devices and actuators to be manipulated within patient's body. Best of all is its small working envelope which is preferable for human-robot co-manipulation (Camera holder, Laser surgery robot) and most suitable in multi-robot cooperation (Suturing Robots).
Different from the current market leader that provides one complex system to applied into all kinds of MIS procedures, the VESALIUS Robot uses another approach which is called 'Modular CustoMization' (MCM) that the system is customized to the level of specific surgical procedure with the integration of existing modules. The advantages of MCM are:
1. Because every surgical procedure is mostly standardized, the customization action can directly improve the ergonomics and conveniences with least tradeoff.
2. Many technical modules like sensors, instruments and algorithms are available and very reliable. The demand-driven integration with VRP will generate new IP, knowhow and surgical applications.
The following shows the examples of MCM approach. Two levels are proposed. The basic components in Level 1 are called modules. The resulting unit is defined as a Surgical Functional Unit (SFU). A SFU provides task-specific functions in a surgical procedure. For example, a camera holder allows the surgeon to control the movement of the camera. In level 2, several SFUs can be assembled with modules to obtain more versatile functionalities such as the example of a daVinci-like surgical system.