ICRA 2015 Workshop: Shared Frameworks for Medical Robotics Research


Date:                    30 May 2015

Time:                    8:30am-5pm

Venue:                 IEEE International Conference for Robotics and Automation (ICRA)
                              Washington State Convention Center, Seattle Washington

Duration:            Full day




1.      Peter Kazanzides
The Johns Hopkins University, U.S.A.

2.      Howie Choset
Carnegie Mellon University, U.S.A.

3.      Tamás Haidegger
Óbuda University, Hungary

4.      Simon DiMaio (corresponding contact)

Intuitive Surgical, Inc.




The medical robotics research community is benefitting from a variety of common research platforms and shared software frameworks that are helping to foster collaboration between groups, and to accelerate the progress of technology development. The ability to rapidly prototype new instruments, algorithms, and applications by leveraging these shared and common resources is allowing for groups to replicate and build upon each other's work more effectively than in the past. Some examples of emerging common hardware platforms are the RAVEN-II, the KUKA Lightweight Arm, and the da Vinci Research Kit (DVRK). This workshop will allow participants to present and to discuss detailed examples of collaborative multi-institutional research that has been supported by shared frameworks. This will help to engage a broader segment of the robotics research community to scope priorities for future needs, infrastructure development, adoption, and shared support. The workshop will be divided into four segments:

1.      Brief background on several relevant research platforms and frameworks (via invited presentations);

2.      Examples of collaborative research that has been facilitated by leveraging these common frameworks;

3.      Interactive poster session for groups to showcase the results of collaborative research efforts and shared platforms;

4.      Discussion of current gaps and needs for further extending both the capabilities of community infrastructure and collaboration between groups.








Opening Remarks


Keynote: “Clinical Needs for the Surgical Robotics Research Community to Tackle”
Professor Umamaheswar Duvvuri, MD, PhD. Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center



“The case for shared research frameworks and platforms”.
Russell Taylor, The Johns Hopkins University.


“The RAVEN-II open source surgical robot platform”.
Andrew Lewis, Applied Dexterity.


“The KUKA Lightweight Arm”

Cyrill von Tiesenhausen, KUKA Laboratories


“The da Vinci Research Kit”

Simon DiMaio, Intuitive Surgical Inc.


“Robot Operating System (ROS) in Medical Robotics”

Greg Fischer, Worcester Polytechnic Institute


The Surgical Assistant Workstation (SAW) Software Framework

Peter Kazanzides, The Johns Hopkins University





“The Intuitive DVRK, CISST-SAW and Matlab xPC: a Case Study for System Interoperability Supporting Robot Situational Awareness Research”

Collaborators: Carnegie Mellon Institute, The Johns Hopkins University, Vanderbilt University

Presenter: Peter Kazanzides, The Johns Hopkins University


“Behavior Trees in Medical Robotics”

Presenters: Blake Hannaford and Danying Hu, Washington University


“Using the dVRK to evaluate virtual stabilization for surgery on the beating heart”

Collaborators: University of British Columbia, Stanford University

Presenter: Angelica Ruszkowski, University of British Columbia


“Smart Tissue Anastomosis Robot (STAR): Using the LBR for Laparoscopic Suturing”

Presenter: Axel Krieger, Children’s National Medical Centre, Washington DC


“Multilateral Manipulation by Human-Robot Collaborative Systems”

Collaborators: Berkeley, Washington, The Johns Hopkins University, UCSC, Stanford

Presenter: Allison Okamura, Stanford University




Poster Teasers


Interactive Poster Session (list of poster titles below).





“Clinical perspective on the day”

Professor Umamaheswar Duvvuri, MD, PhD. Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center


Discussion: Current gaps and future needs for community infrastructure in surgical robotics research.


Discussion: Collaboration and communication mechanisms: benefits and shortcomings.


Discussion: Funding challenges and solutions for developing and supporting community infrastructure.


Summary discussion: identify and prioritize actionable focus areas.






Poster Session


Poster Title


Simulink to C++ Interface for Controller Development

on the da Vinci Research Kit (dVRK)

Angelica Ruszkowski, Zhan Fan Quek, Allison Okamura, and Septimiu Salcudean

University of British Columbia; Stanford University

Multilateral Cutting using the da Vinci Research Kit (DVRK): Surgical Subtask Automation using Learning by Observation

Adithyavairavan Murali, Siddarth Sen, Ben Kehoe, Animesh Garg, Seth McFarland, Sachin Patil, W. Douglas Boyd, Susan Lim, Pieter Abbeel, Ken Goldberg

University of California, Berkeley

Preliminary Report on the Design of a Palpation Probe for Robot-Assisted Minimally Invasive Surgery

Stephen McKinley, Animesh Garg, Siddarth Sen, Rishi Kapadia1, Adithyavairavan Murali, Kirk Nichols, Susan Lim, Sachin Patil, Pieter Abbeel, Allison M. Okamura, Ken Goldberg

University of California, Berkeley; and Stanford University.

Roles of OpenIGTLink in Medical Robotics Research

Junichi Tokuda, Gregory S. Fischer, Iulian Iordachita3, Sebastian Tauscher, Peter Kazanzides, Cyrill von

Tiesenhausen, Everette C. Burdette, Clare M. Tempany

Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School; Worcester Polytechnic Institute; Johns Hopkins University; Leibniz Universität Hannover; KUKA Roboter GmbH; Acoustic MedSystems, Inc.

Behavior Trees for Medical Procedure Modeling

Danying Hu and Blake Hannaford

University of Washington

From Simulation to Experimentation, using a KUKA LWR, for Orthopedic Robotic Surgery

P.J.S. Goncalves, P.M.B. Torres, J.M.M. Martins

Instituto Politecnico de Castelo Branco; Escola Superior de Tecnologia; IDMEC/LAETA, Instituto Superior Tecnico, Universidade de Lisboa

A Development of Novel Vision System

for Laparoscopic Surgical Robot System

Myungjoon Kim, Woo Jung Park, Chiwon Lee, Yoonjae Kim, Seungwon Choi, Yun Suhk Suh, Han Kwang Yang, H. Jin Kim and Sungwan Kim

Seoul National University

The CALap System—A Low-Cost Lightweight Robotic Arm for Laparosopic Camera Handling

Denes Akos Nagy, Arpad Takacs, Imre J. Rudas and Tamas Haidegger

Obuda University;  Semmelweis University;  Austrian Center for Medical Innovation and Technology

Eye Gaze Tracking System for the da Vinci Research Kit

Irene Tong , Omid Mohareri , Samuel Tatasurya , Craig Hennessey , Septimiu Salcudean

The University of British Columbia; Intuitive Surgical Inc.; Gazepoint

Interfacing the da Vinci Research Kit (dVRK) with the Robot Operating System (ROS)

Zihan Chen, Anton Deguet, Steve Vozar, Adnan Munawar, Greg Fischer, and Peter Kazanzides

Johns Hopkins University; Worcester Polytechnic Institute