The Surgical Robotics researchers investigate problems, identify enabling technologies and develop solutions for addressing the field of minimally invasive and targeted therapy and diagnosis.
The Surgical Robotics group addresses the main scientific problem of covering the gap between diagnosis and therapy, by blending together competences coming from robotics and bioengineering and by developing platforms, enabling technologies and components with the ability to treat many pathologies in the human body, including in hard-to reach areas (e.g. in the cardiovascular system, in the respiratory apparatus, in the central nervous system, in the abdominal cavities, etc.).
Advanced Robotic Devices for Diagnosis and Targeted Therapy
This research line collects all projects devoted to the development of robots, capsules, instrumented catheters, and probes able to operate and navigate in the human body for diagnostic and therapeutic applications. Therapy and diagnosis can be performed in the human abdomen, in the cardiovascular system, in the gastrointestinal tract, but also in other hard-to-reach districts. The typical size of devices entering the human body ranges between 10 cm and tens of microns, depending on the target area and the patient (which can be an adult as well as a child before delivery).
Sensing Systems for Medical Devices
This research line includes projects devoted to develop sensing systems for health monitoring or for health assistance (e.g. for people with ventricular assistive devices), as well as visualization technologies for endoluminal devices. More specifically, there is a strong competence in the development of vision sensing systems, illumination devices, and ancillary sensing technologies to be used in different cavities of the human body.
Enabling Technologies (e.g. nanotransducer and bio-hybrid devices).
This research line includes a broad range of novel technological solutions aiming at significantly improving or even revolutionizing the possibilities and performances of current sensors, actuators and mechatronic systems. Such solutions rely on the development and assembly of smart materials and micro/nano-particles, also exploiting some intriguing properties of these systems (e.g. piezoelectricity) and on the integration of living cells and tissues within bioartificial structures, towards the development of bio-hybrid systems.