Da Vinci surgical robot makes a tiny paper airplane

Apr 05, 2011 by Lisa Zyga weblog
paper airplane
This image taken from the video below shows da Vinci's robotic grippers making a paper airplane. Image credit: Swedish Medical Center.

(PhysOrg.com) -- The da Vinci surgical robot may be best known for performing prostate, gynecological, and heart valve surgeries. But in its spare moments, as Dr. James Porter of the Swedish Medical Center in Seattle has recently demonstrated, the da Vinci robot can also make and fly paper airplanes.

In the video below, Porter shows how the precise movements of the robotic grippers can be used to fold the tiny creases on a very basic paper airplane, which is about the size of a penny. Porter controls the robotic grippers with joystick-like hand controllers while looking at a 3D image on a viewfinder. The system translates the surgeon’s movements into more precise micro-movements while reducing any shaking.

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.
Dr. James Porter folds a paper airplane using the da Vinci surgical robot.

Currently, 1,000 of the $1.3-million da Vinci robots are being used worldwide to perform surgeries. Among the advantages of the system are that many procedures that traditionally require large incisions can now be made minimally invasive, and many patients have shorter recovery times.

Explore further: Human or robot? Hit Swedish TV series explores shrinking divide

More information:
via: IEEE Spectrum

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User comments : 8

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Carbon18
not rated yet Apr 05, 2011
A nice demonstration.
I'm amazed at the apparent fluidity of movement of the robotic tweezers. It makes the robots use look almost easy.
El_Nose
not rated yet Apr 05, 2011
this was the robot that was on House the tv show undoing a blouse.
SmartK8
not rated yet Apr 05, 2011
It's still too expensive. The U.S. should get together, and catch up with the world in the use of newly developed endoscopic procedures. Instead of promoting this technology. It's still cool though. No doubts about that.
myefox2012
not rated yet Apr 06, 2011
It's still too expensive. The U.S. should get together, and catch up with the world in the use of newly developed endoscopic procedures. Instead of promoting this technology. It's still cool though. No doubts about that.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (1) Apr 06, 2011
It's still too expensive. The U.S. should get together, and catch up with the world in the use of newly developed endoscopic procedures.

While I usually agree on bashing the US over their dropping scientific significance in this case it is not merited.

The daVinci System is basically the ONLY robot in the operating room (worldwide) that has not failed spectacularly in an economic sense (most other companies went bust).

There have been numerous other tries, but the advantages of better operation outcome and less operating time ( = more opertations per operating room = more profit) have not come true. Mostly because these robots are hard to prep and hard to sterilize. These two issues alone bind personell and the operating room beyond of what a normal operation would require.

The operation results are also pretty much on a par as to the pre-robot era. So hospitals are still loathe to cough up the 5 million or so a robot costs.
SmartK8
not rated yet Apr 06, 2011
myefox2012: What ? :D

antialias_physorg: This really is not about bashing the US. Because I never do. I mean it. The efficiency of the endoscopy is the next step. I guess the Da Vinci is the next one after that. But right now, it is too much. It's not about the anything else than money. As usual in the end.
Norezar
not rated yet Apr 10, 2011
I wonder if I could pick my nose with this.
EWH
not rated yet May 07, 2011
I'm not sure of the advantage, aside from filtering out shaking. I just made a paper airplane the same size, with finer control of the folds in 2/3 of the time, on my first try, using nothing but my fingers.