One of the major advances in medical science in recent years is the improvement of diagnosis and surgical procedures enabled by minimally invasive and remotely articulated precision surgical instruments. Techniques such as “keyhole surgery” greatly reduce pain and inflammation and significantly reduce recovery times.
SMA can be used to improve these devices by:
• improving the quality of images from the camera,
• holding or stabilising the area of the body that is being examined
• confining bio-material for easy removal
• improving the manipulation of tools
• providing haptic feedback that replicates the tactile sensation of using a surgical tool.
SMA actuators can also be used in applications where precise dosing and metering are needed, for example drug delivery systems. SMAs lightweight and power efficient designs can be used in portable devices such as insulin pumps.
SMA actuators are ideally suited to medical applications because they are bio-compatible, small and lightweight.
We are currently engaged in a number collaborative projects with medical research groups around the world.