medical robotics - fields of activity
The exacure system is the first stand-alone medical device that has been developed by BEC, as a certified medical device manufacturer (DIN ISO 13485) and got successfully installed at MedAustron in Wiener Neustadt.
A custom-modified industrial robot, designed and adapted for medical use, is the core of the exacure-system. Its most distinctive feature is the ceiling mount, which allows for movement in seven independent degrees of freedom. The robot can not only be positioned in all three dimensions and six degrees of freedom, but also be moved along the ceiling towards and from the beam nozzle in order to further improve flexibility of patient positioning. Another advantage of the ceiling-mounted system is the integrated optical tracking system: it monitors the treatment couch position 500 times per second and applies corrections in real time, if necessary, to ensure optimal treatment results.
The agility of the robot, which can be optionally ramped up with a seventh axis for extended workspace requirements, enables examove to position and move patients in all six degrees of freedom (DOF) and perform +/- 130 degrees of isocentric rotation. In the up to 300 kg payload category, KUKA offers the most compact machine on the market, and with the highest power density, making it possible to position patients weighing up to 300 kg. BEC technology makes the positioning system accurate up to ± 0.5 millimeters. Mass-induced fl ex of the couch can be compensated for by look-up tables and models of the system or can be automatically compensated by a tracking-based feedback loop.
The requirements for medical devices that are used for BNCT treatment differ substantially from the requirements for systems used in conventional radiotherapy, as material properties are degraded by the neutron irradiation. Depending on the spectrum of the neutrons the exposure limits the life time of components or makes them even unsuitable for BNCT treatment. The exacure system from BEC is currently the only certified medical device available that meets those challenging requirements and ensures patient safety during BNCT treatment with the full range of functions, including patient positioning and imaging.
With guidoo the doctor reaches his destination faster. The robotic biopsy system allows assisted tissue sampling in just a few steps. After a calibration scan with the CT, the exact position of the robot in the room as well as the target tissue in the patient is known. The intelligent path planning tool can then be used to quickly and safely target, reach and biopsize multiple targets in the patient. guidoo is also perfect for other applications, for example in the field of ablative procedures and radiotherapy.
Relearning the movement of the arm and hand is an important therapeutic step, to help stroke patients regaining autonomy again. However, current forms of therapy are often inadequate in their execution. For successful therapy, the frequency of exercises and applications must be steadily increased. BEC develops robot-based rehabilitation systems for the precise diagnosis of existing abilities and therapy of the upper extremities. This allows patients to quickly relearn their motor skills and increase patient independence.
Smart machines will become an integral part of the lives of older people in the future. Not as a substitute for interpersonal contacts, but as a wise aid for maintaining quality of life, physical well-being and mental performance. The project RoSylernNT, which is run by BEC together with the Sport University Cologne and the RWTH Aachen University, is to help such a learning robot system to make a breakthrough. The construction of robots that sustainably enrich and ease people's lives is an old human dream. The basic idea of the development project is to create a training device that will automatically integrate the individual constitution of the exerciser, any previous damage and the physiological changes in the course of such exercises into the control of the intensity. This is interesting for healthy gym students, for high-performance athletes, but especially for the elderly, who could often benefit from a workout in which meaningful exercises for a certain organ, however, can quickly lead to overload on other parts of the body.