September 8, 2016By Lance Baily

Polhemus Provides Hand Motion Tracking Systems for Surgical Simulators

How do surgical simulators know your exact hand placement at all times? Brands like SimSurgery work with Motion Tracking Systems like the PATRIOT from Polhemus. If you or your team are building advanced simulators, be sure to learn what Polhemus can do for your innovative project!

Polhemus is proud to provide the enabling technology that powers SEP. SimSurgery uses the Polhemus PATRIOT system in the SEP simulator. Specifically, the SEP system allows surgical students to train and learn surgical skills, such as hand-eye coordination, use of endoscope and surgical instruments, tissue manipulation, and other procedural skills before operating on patients.

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When reviewing tracking options, PATRIOT was top choice. According to Vidar Sorhus, PhD, CTO, SimSurgery, “The reason for this selection is the combination of performance, cost, and size of the PATRIOT system–we needed a system with two trackers that we could embed into our simulation hardware.” The PATRIOT sensors are not only easily embedded, but due to the true 6DOF the PATRIOT delivers, the SEP system can track both position and orientation of laparoscopic instruments. The tracked position and orientation data is used as input to real-time 3D simulation of surgical techniques and procedures.

For this application, SimSurgery needed a high level of accuracy and repeatability of position and orientation values, as well as a high update rate. PATRIOT was the perfect solution to achieve this. According to Vidar Sorhus of SimSurgery, “A great advantage of the PATRIOT tracking system used in SEP is that it measures the position and orientation of the free instruments without having the instruments anchored in a mechanical measurement system. This feature makes the simulator user interface very flexible and allows the user to freely select an instrument port. As a consequence, the system can be used to simulate scenarios with any port configurations, including single incision laparoscopic surgery.”

Learn more at the Polhemus Website!

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