University-launched startup EBM Corporation has partnered with Japanese rubber manufacturer Toyoda Gosei for the development of a surgical training simulator called SupeR BEAT.
The companies created a prototype of the simulator that can accurately replicate the beating of the heart using e-Rubber, which is an artificial muscle that leverages electricity for functioning.
In November last year, the partners initiated their alliance to devise and promote a simulator for aiding surgeons in efficiently improving their skills.
Surgical training using simulators is considered beneficial in order to ensure safety during medical surgeries, including cardiovascular procedures.
The simulation in EBM’s existing BEAT device is obtained through a shape-memory alloy which can expand and contract by heating, thereby reproducing the movement of the heart.
The device’s high-end version, SupeR BEAT, uses the e-Rubber muscle that switches on/off with electricity.
Regulation of fine movement is said to also help in imitating states, including complex heartbeat patterns caused by arrhythmia or the rapid heartbeat of children. This facilitates simulation of a setting which is closer to that of actual surgery.
EBM and Toyoda Gosei are planning to start sales of the Super BEAT simulator next year. The partners are currently working towards further improving the device’s performance.
Primarily, EBM focuses on simulator development and system creation for surgical technique training in Japan as well as international markets. The firm’s area-of-interest is cardiac surgery.
Its portfolio consists of coronary bypass surgical training simulators, BEAT and YOUCAN, which are said to have been used in approximately 70% of cardiovascular surgery hospitals in Japan.
In addition, the simulators are available in the US, along with European and Asian markets.