Electrophysiological catheters are used for both diagnostics and clinical intervention. To facilitate more accurate and precise catheter navigation, robotic cardiac catheter navigation systems have been developed and commercialized. The authors have developed a novel force-reflecting robotic catheter navigation system. The system is a network-based master-slave configuration having a 3-degree of freedom robotic manipulator for operation with a conventional cardiac ablation catheter. The master manipulator implements a haptic user interface device with force feedback using a force or torque signal either measured with a sensor or estimated from the motor current signal in the slave manipulator. The slave manipulator is a robotic motion control platform on which the cardiac ablation catheter is mounted. The catheter motions-forward and backward movements, rolling, and catheter tip bending-are controlled by electromechanical actuators located in the slave manipulator. The control software runs on a real-time operating system-based workstation and implements the master/slave motion synchronization control of the robot system. The master/slave motion synchronization response was assessed with step, sinusoidal, and arbitrarily varying motion commands, and showed satisfactory performance with insignificant steady-state motion error. The current system successfully implemented the motion control function and will undergo safety and performance evaluation by means of animal experiments. Further studies on the force feedback control algorithm and on an active motion catheter with an embedded actuation mechanism are underway.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Biomedical Engineering