Design, Modelling and Fabrication of a Robotic Retractor for Colorectal Surgery
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This research presents the design, fabrication and controller development of a robotic retractor which driven by a robotic manipulator for laparoscopic colorectal surgery. The system consists of a dual-head fan retractor and a manipulator. The dual-head fan retractor comprises two fan devices, retractor wrist, tubular element and handle. The fan device is facilitated with a fan end-effector, an expansion mechanism and a clutchspring mechanism. Two fan devices have been used in the system to provide an anthropoid hand-holding shape which is specifically advanced for surgical purpose because intestine tends to slip when subject to disturbance and the anthropoid handholding shape can effectively halt that. One of the two fan devices is rotatable which makes the anthropoid hand-holding shape achievable. The retractor wrist possesses a triggering device, based on clutch-spring mechanism, for rotating the rotatable fan device. The clutch-spring mechanism has an impact on rotating the palms of the fan devices. In front of the handle, it is the so called front body which includes two fan devices, retractor wrist and tubular element. The front body can be controlled and is motorised using two motors fixed to the tubular element. The dual-head fan retractor is modelled in SolidWorks, and stress analysis of the retractor has been carried out by SolidWorks Simulation. Then, the mathematical model of the fan blades is developed. A 3-joint manipulator is modelled and controlled by a computed torque PD control approach as part of an investigative study to fit such a system to the retractor for robotic manipulation. Based on this investigation, the retractor is attached to a 2-joint robotic manipulator which has one rotational joint and a prismatic joint. This manipulator is mathematically modelled, and the dynamic equations are obtained. Control methods from Azenha and Khatib are simulated and compared. Azenha & Machado’s method has fewer input parameters and less oscillation when utilising the same control gains. Timeoptimal control is then successfully developed for the above 2-joint manipulator. This study clearly indicates that a retractor to be used for laparoscopic surgery can be effectively controlled using a multi-joints and multi degrees of freedom robotic manipulator.
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