Using a Redundant User Interface in Teleoperated Surgical Systems for Task Performance Enhancement

Ali Torabi, Mohsen Khadem, Kourosh Zareinia, Garnette Roy Sutherland, Mahdi Tavakoli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The enhanced dexterity and manipulability offered by master–slave teleoperated surgical systems have significantly improved the performance and safety of minimally invasive surgeries. However, effective manipulation of surgical robots is sometimes limited due to the mismatch between the slave and master robots’ kinematics and workspace. The purpose of this paper is first to formulate a quantifiable measure of the combined master–slave system manipulability. Next, we develop a null-space controller for the redundant master robot that employs the proposed manipulability index to enhance the performance of teleoperation tasks by matching the kinematics of the redundant master robot with the kinematics of the slave robot. The null-space controller modulates the redundant degrees of freedom of the master robot to reshape its manipulability ellipsoid (ME) towards the ME of the slave robot. The ME is the geometric interpretation of the kinematics of a robot. By reshaping the master robot’s manipulability, we match the master and slave robots’ kinematics. We demonstrate that by using a redundant master robot, we are able to enhance the master–slave system manipulability and more intuitively transfer the slave robot’s dexterity to the user. Simulation and experimental studies are performed to validate the performance of the proposed control strategy. Results demonstrate that by employing the proposed manipulability index, we can enhance the user’s control over the force/velocity of a surgical robot and minimize the user’s control effort for a teleoperated task.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1880-1894
Number of pages15
Issue number10
Early online date20 May 2020
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2020


  • Teleoperation
  • Haptic Interfaces
  • Medical Robots and Systems
  • Redundant Manipulators
  • Null-space Control.

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