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Sofie surgical robot gives haptic feedback for a more humane touch

Laura June

Surgical procedures assisted by robots are nothing new -- they can be more precise and less invasive -- and now it looks like a new upgrade could make them even better. The main drawback of a surgical robot is that the human surgeon performing the operation gets no tactile feedback, but that's not the case with Sofie. Sofie, a joystick controlled robot gives haptic feedback to the surgeon by adjusting the resistance the controls give to indicate how much pressure is being exerted, surely a welcome addition to bots of this kind. This robot is also more compact than many earlier bots of this kind, and its creators are now looking to bring it into production, with a goal of it coming to the market in about five years.

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