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Immersion Licenses TouchSense Haptics Technology for Telesurgical Robot System

Haptics technology’s leading licensor and developer, Immersion Corporation, has announced that a leading, minimally invasive surgery medical devices manufacturer in Italy, SOFAR S.p.A., has received a license for using the TouchSense haptics technology in its Advanced Laparoscopy through Force Reflection (ALF-X) telesurgical robot system.

TouchSense will offer haptic feedback in the console or cockpit through which surgeons manipulate and control the system by utilizing sense of touch for assisting in laparoscopic and device navigation procedures. The license represents Immersion’s impetus in the developing robotics surgery market.

Immersion TouchSense Tactile Feedback Systems

SOFAR collaborated with the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission' to develop ALF-X. This system employs a portfolio of features that cover tactile sensing safety, ease-of-use, capabilities, and versatility, to enhance the laparoscopic surgical procedures’ quality. ALF-X is likely to be utilized in research organizations, medical training centers, hospitals, and universities around the world.

The surgical robotics equipment that is predicted to peak to $14 billion by 2014 was $1 billion in 2008. Innovators like SOFAR will be use the intuitive programmable haptics expertise of Immersion for integrating critical touch feedback in gadgets for the fast growing segment.

Immersion’s Senior Vice President Craig Vachon informed that the technological improvements in robotic and laparoscopic surgery have expanded the practitioner’s reach and outcomes, but have formed a physical distance. He added that TouchSense technology has bridged this distance and provides tactile cues. These cues in turn inform a surgeon, resulting in enhancement of the procedure quality and optimal patient care. He added that the importance of touch feedback for live surgery operations is fully understood by SOFAR.

SOFAR’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Alfonso Labruzzo informed that it is important that the surgeons maintain their sense of touch with the technology’s evolution and innovations. He added that the industry-leading haptics of Immersion has enabled SOFAR to offer the vital touch feedback component to surgeons working on the ALF-system, providing them with  a distinctive surgical solution.


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