Telesurgery via unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) with a field deployable surgical robot

Mitchell J.H. Lum, Jacob Rosen, Hawkeye King, Diana C.W. Friedman, Gina Donlin, Ganesh Sankaranarayanan, Brett Harnett, Lynn Huffman, Charles Doarn, Timothy Broderick, Blake Hannaford

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Robotically assisted surgery stands to further revolutionize the medical field and provide patients with more effective healthcare. Most robotically assisted surgeries are teleoperated from the surgeon console to the patient where both ends of the system are located in the operating room. The challenge of surgical teleoperation across a long distance was already demonstrated through a wired communication network in 2001. New development has shifted towards deploying a surgical robot system in mobile settings and/or extreme environments such as the battlefield or natural disaster areas with surgeons operating wirelessly. As a collaborator in the HAPs/MRT (High Altitude Platform/Mobile Robotic Telesurgery) project, The University of Washington surgical robot was deployed in the desert of Simi Valley, CA for telesurgery experiments on an inanimate model via wireless communication through an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). The surgical tasks were performed telerobotically with a maximum time delay between the surgeon's console (master) and the surgical robot (slave) of 20 ms for the robotic control signals and 200 ms for the video stream. This was our first experiment in the area of Mobile Robotic Telesurgery (MRT). The creation and initial testing of a deployable surgical robot system will facilitate growth in this area eventually leading to future systems saving human lives in disaster areas, on the battlefield or in other remote environments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)313-315
Number of pages3
JournalStudies in health technology and informatics
StatePublished - 2007
Event15th Annual Conference on Medicine Meets Virtual Reality, MMVR 2007 - Long Beach, CA, United States
Duration: Feb 6 2007Feb 9 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management


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