DSM, working on an SBIR project for The Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD), is developing a new hexapod for compliance-based medical imaging and surgical interventions. The design features a six degree-of-freedom parallel end-effector mechanism that can be mounted on the end of a medium-sized robot manipulator.
DSM is actively seeking commercial opportunities for this system.
From the SBIR Project Summary: Ultrasound represents one of the most promising new technologies for use both on and off the battlefield. During ultrasound procedures, it is typically required that a specified level of force be applied on the patient, which is made particularly difficult because of the compliance of soft skin tissue and involuntary movements due to respiration. It is extremely difficult for a serial-link manipulator to respond quickly enough to accommodate this motion due to high inertia and inaccuracies caused by low stiffness at the tool point.