Virtual Reality Medical Training with Force Feedback

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Title: Virtual Reality Medical Training with Force Feedback
Creators: Moody, David
Advisor: Dapino, Marcelo J.
Issue Date: 2005-06
Abstract: There is a critical need for employers to train employees quickly, safely, and effectively such that employees can retain skills and become proficient at their craft less expensively. Virtual reality has been shown to enable novel training solutions in many fields, such as: automotive industry, military, construction, and agriculture, among others. Training simulators have been developed that use virtual reality (VR) software in combination with force feedback devices composed of electric motors and cables. These systems allow users to interact with the computer and have force-feedback (haptic) devices which mimic the tactile sensation of the physical system being simulated. In these haptic devices, each cable has a small amount of compliance, which results in reduced bandwidth. The bandwidth of a device is the range in which it can accept or reject signals. In the medical applications being considered, the signal is the medical trainee using a surgical tool on a patient. The responsibility of the haptic device is to respond to the medical trainee’s surgical tool with various distinct forces for a large range of operations. The compliance of current haptic devices reduces the overall bandwidth significantly and therefore another design for haptic devices is necessary. The objective of this project is to develop the next generation of haptic devices for realistic medical training. This project uses an electromagnet to achieve the goal of developing a haptic device that will provide a larger bandwidth, high fidelity, and the appropriate force feedback in the computer based simulations. A device was created in the Smart Material and Smart Structures Lab that uses the properties of electromagnets that has effectively demonstrated the ability to simulate bone contact, which current haptic devices are unable to simulate at this time. The design being used can be thought of as a braking mechanism. This brake mechanism was developed in conjunction with researchers at the Ohio Supercomputer Center (OSC) to train medical residents in epidural needle insertion, a surgery often performed to reduce pain for mothers during childbirth.
Series/Report no.: The Ohio State University. Department of Mechanical Engineering Honors Theses;2005
Keywords: Epidural
Virtual Reality
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