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10 May

Hybrid Optical-Electronic Imaging Probe for Guiding Minimally Invasive Robotic Surgeries

Named Projects
Supervision Team:

Dr Adrien Desjardins (UCL MedPhys)
Dr Ioannis Papakonstantinou (UCL EEE)
Dr Manish Tiwari (UCL MechEng)
Dr Malcolm Finlay (Barts Heart Centre and QMUL)

Start date: 25th September 2017

Minimally invasive procedures allow clinicians to treat many types of conditions, as alternatives to open surgeries. Robotic assistance is increasingly used to reduce X-ray radiation, to provide medical device stabilisation, and to increase precision of manipulations. However, with current generation technologies, limited visualisation and sensing of structures handicaps the potential of robotic technologies to optimise patient outcomes.

Current imaging modalities often lack sufficient spatial resolution and tissue contrast, and offer only indirect views. There is an urgent need for new imaging and sensing technologies to visualise tissues from within the body in high resolution, directly from robotically-controlled medical devices.

This project is centred on the development of new methods for performing high-resolution ultrasound imaging, which could include combinations of optical ultrasound transmission from micro-patterned surfaces and micro-fabricated piezoelectric receiver arrays.
There is an opportunity to develop the first hybrid ultrasound imaging probe in which transmission is performed optically and reception is performed electronically. Depending on the student’s interests, the foci could include image/signal processing and/or micro-fabrication techniques. The student will be a part of a supportive, interdisciplinary team, with Scientists and Engineers working alongside Clinicians. Strong interest in Medical Physics is essential; previous experience in programming environments such as Matlab, Python, or Labview would be advantageous.

This project is synergistic with the Wellcome Trust and EPSRC funded GIFT-Surg project for fetal therapy and surgery led by UCL. We envision that the outcomes of this research project will help increase the chances of early diagnosis of a variety of clinical contexts

This is a funded project studentship (including fees). The possibility of completing the MRes year is also (offered by the CDT in Medical Imaging) prior to the MPhil/PhD year if wanted or needed.

Eligibility Criteria: Applicants should be Home fee payers or EU status having been living or working in the UK for 3 year to be eligible for full funding.

HOW TO APPLY Please send a copy of your CV and a personal statement expressing your interest in the project to a.desjardins@ucl.ac.uk