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Microrobotic laser steering for minimally invasive surgery

The creation of multiarticulated mechanisms for use with minimally invasive surgical tools is difficult because of fabrication, assembly, and actuation challenges on the millimeter scale of these devices. Nevertheless, such mechanisms are desirable for granting surgeons greater precision and dexterity to manipulate and visualize tissue at the surgical site. Here, we describe the construction of a complex optoelectromechanical device that can be integrated with existing surgical tools to control the position of a fiber-delivered laser. By using modular assembly and a laminate fabrication method, we are able to create a smaller and higher-bandwidth device than the current state of the art while achieving a range of motion similar to existing tools. The device we present is 6 millimeters in diameter and 16 millimeters in length and is capable of focusing and steering a fiber-delivered laser beam at high speed (1.2-kilohertz bandwidth) over a large range (over ±10 degrees in both of two axes) with excellent static repeatability (200 micrometers).

Source: Science Mag: Microrobotic laser steering for minimally invasive surgery