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Monday, August 22, 2022

Surgery Robot on ISS

Clearly needed as distances and times in space grow. 

A Surgery Robot Will Board the ISS in 2024

By Adrianna Nine on August 4, 2022   in ExtremeTech

After nearly 20 years of development, a small remote-controlled surgery robot is preparing to join the most exclusive medical arena currently known: the International Space Station (ISS).

In partnership with robotics company Virtual Incision, engineers at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln have devised a narrow robot that helps medical professionals conduct surgical procedures from afar. MIRA, short for “miniaturized in vivo robotic assistant,” can be controlled remotely and even perform surgery autonomously. And thanks to a $100,000 grant from NASA, it could be proving its chops in space in as little as two years.

At first glance, the two-pound robot almost looks like a small kitchen gadget. Its base rod has a few basic switches and eventually gives way to a claw-like apparatus, which performs the actual surgery. Between each arm of the claw exists a camera, which helps to guide the robot throughout the procedure. But no one will be manning the camera when MIRA’s aboard the ISS. Instead, MIRA will work autonomously to complete simulation exercises, such as cutting taut rubber bands or pushing metal rings along a wire, which the University of Nebraska-Lincoln says imitates surgical activity.  .... ' 

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