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back to article Robot surgery gets virtual at Euro Space Agency

The European Space Agency is showing off an augmented-reality kit which it says will ultimately pave the way for diagnosis and even surgery for astronauts. The CAMDASS – Computer-Assisted Medical Diagnosis and Surgery System – combines a head-mounted display with 3D guidance. The prototype has been developed with ultrasound in …

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FAIL

Ummmm medical support to Mars

Could be a bit tricky given the up to 22 minute delay for message transmission, so thats 44 minute round trip. Nice scenario, astronaut needs operating on, have to wait 44 minutes for the next set of instructions to come through whilst they bleed to death on the operating table.

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Ru

Hard to tell, but...

It sounds like the system is supposed to provide assistance to let the astronauts sort stuff out for themselves. The head-mounted display is presumably for the use of a non-expert, and tells its wearer what they should be sticking where. Talk of 'ultrasound probes' sounds like it is intended to deal with diagnosis rather than be a My First Open Heart Surgery system... even with a 40+ minute round trip, the operator would presumably be guided through all the necessary steps to gather the information the real medics back on earth need to know in order to provide useful advice.

Basic surgery isn't rocket science; you can train up almost anyone to do stitching, bone setting, casting, whatever. Diagnosis is potentially much harder, hence the need for this sort of system.

Course, I might have the wrong end of the stick entirely.

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Trollface

2001 reference:

Open the pod-bay, HAL (unclench thy buttocks)

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