Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Engineering Science


Biomedical Engineering


Dr. Rajni Patel

2nd Supervisor

Dr. Michael Naish

Joint Supervisor


Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer related deaths. If diagnosed in a timely manner, the treatment of choice is surgical resection of the cancerous lesions followed by radiotherapy. However, surgical resection may be too invasive for some patients due to old age or weakness. An alternative is minimally invasive needle-based interventions for cancer diagnosis and treatment. This project describes the design, analysis, development and experimental evaluation of a modular, compact, patient-mounted robotic manipulator for lung cancer diagnosis and treatment. In this regard, a novel parallel Remote Centre of Motion (RCM) mechanism is proposed for minimally invasive delivery of needle-based interventions. The proposed robot provides four degrees of freedom (DOFs) to orient and move a surgical needle within a spherical coordinate system. There is an analytical solution for the kinematics of the proposed parallel mechanism and the end-effectors motion is well-conditioned within the required workspace. The RCM is located beneath the skin surface to minimize the invasiveness of the surgical procedure while providing the required workspace to target the cancerous lesions. In addition, the proposed robot benefits from a design capable of measuring the interaction forces between the needle and the tissue. The experimental evaluation of the robot has proved its capability to accurately orient and move a surgical needle within the required workspace. Although this robotic system has been designed for the treatment of lung cancer, it is capable of performing other procedures in the thoracic or abdominal cavity such as liver cancer diagnosis and treatment.