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Shrinking the Cutting Edge: Making Small-Scale Medical Robots for Humans

ICRA 2023 Full Day Workshop Monday 29th May 2023
Icra 23

This workshop brings together experienced researchers and students to discuss the state of the art, the technical problems, and the challenges of small-scale medical robots. From a science fiction vision of miniaturizing robots to access remote regions in the human body, the field of small-scale robotics has witnessed an astonishing evolution in the last decade. This evolution has been fostered by a highly interdisciplinary approach involving roboticists, material scientists, physicists, computer scientists, and medical doctors.

It is time for the small-scale medical robotics community to identify the issues preventing applications on real medical challenges. In this framework, the workshop will bring together this community to explore both the scientific and the robotic core of small-scale medical robotics. The workshop will include two vision talks, keynotes, and invited talks covering four main topics which support this vision:

  1. imaging and tracking in vivo;
  2. control in medical settings;
  3. materials and fabrication strategies;
  4. smart nanomedicine.

Schedule & speakers

Monday 29th May 2023
8:45 9:00 Registration and Opening
9:00 9:30 Vision talk
Brad Nelson, ETH Zurich
Platform Technologies for Microrobotics
9:30 10:20 Session 1
Imaging and tracking of small-scale robots in vivo
9:30 9:50 Keynote talk
Sylvain Martel, Polytechnique Montréal
Compensating the limitation of imaging technologies with more autonomous small-scale medical robots
9:50 10:05 Invited talk
Arianna Menciassi, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna
Novel microrobot imaging strategies toward closed-loop control in tissues
10:05 10:20 Invited talk
Kai Fung Chan, the Chinese University of Hong Kong
Image-guided microrobotic platform for endoluminal interventions in the gastrointestinal tract
10:20 10:50 Coffee break
10:50 11:40 Session 2
Control of small-scale medical robots
10:50 11:10 Keynote talk
Sarthak Misra, University of Twente
Wireless control of miniaturized agents
11:10 11:25 Invited talk
Pietro Valdastri, University of Leeds
Controlling magnetic tentacle robots for endoluminal applications
11:25 11:40 Invited talk
Tiantian Xu, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Independent control strategy of multiple small-scale magnetic flexible swimming robots
11:40 12:40 Flash talks with troubleshooting
12:40 13:40 Lunch break
13:40 14:40 Poster session
14:40 15:10 Vision talk
Philip Chiu, the Chinese University of Hong Kong
Future of Surgery: Cutting at the microscopic scale
15:10 16:00 Session 3
Materials and fabrication strategies for small-scale robots
15:10 15:30 Keynote talk
Wei Gao, California Institute of Technology
Imaging guided ingestible microrobots
15:30 15:45 Invited talk
Ambarish Gosh, Indian Institute of Science
Multifunctional helical nanorobots: from cancer to dentistry
15:45 16:00 Invited talk
Larisa Florea, Trinity College Dublin
Stimuli-responsive materials for actuation and sensing at the microscale
16:00 16:30 Coffee break
16:30 17:20 Session 4
Smart nanomedicine
16:30 16:50 Keynote talk
Simone Schuerle, ETH Zurich
Engineering and spatially selective control of biohybrid and bioinspired microrobots for locally enhanced drug delivery of nanomedicine
16:50 17:05 Invited talk
Lianqing Liu, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Magnetic Continuum Robot with Multi-Mode Control for Cross-scale accurate drug delivery
17:05 17:20 Invited talk
Donglei (Emma) Fan, The University of Texas at Austin
Electric Manipulation from Nanometers to Decimeters: Position Pinpointed Probing of Single Bacterial Cells and Bulk Water Disinfection
17:20 18:00 Roundtable + Awards

Call for contributions

This workshop aims at stimulating active interaction and knowledge exchange between established experts and early-career researchers. It will create a forum where early-stage researchers can receive expert feedback and be inspired by innovative and cutting-edge ideas.

Hybrid format

All presentations will be streamed on-line.
Prospective questions and discussion topics for the roundtable will be collected all day from both in-presence and on-line participants. Posters will be displayed all day and will also be accessible in digital format for those attending on-line. Moreover, the event streaming chat will be active all day to facilitate interaction among in-presence and on-line attendees.

Abstract submission

Please submit your abstract here by April 20.

Regular contributions

Accepted abstracts for regular contributions will be presented as posters. For each poster, contributors will also be asked to submit a 1-minute video presentation introducing the workshop attendees to the poster content.

Flash talks with troubleshooting

You may ask your abstract to be selected for a flash talk+troubleshooting presentation. These are intended to solicit discussion and interaction between early-stage researchers and more experienced ones.

The selected abstract will be presented as talks consisting of

  • a 3-minutes presentation of the work (flash talk)
  • a 1-minute presentation of open issues in the work (even practical problems), where you can ask for help from one or more invited speakers
  • a 5-minutes discussion, where experienced researchers give suggestions on how to solve the research problems (troubleshooting)

Awards will be assigned at the end of the workshop. The award will be granted by a dedicated committee including the Organizers and three experts selected among the invited speakers.