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Robotic Surgery Training System – Robot Control, System Design (EPS2022/49)

   School of Engineering & Physical Sciences

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  Dr MS Erden  No more applications being accepted  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

A Robotic Surgery Training System has been developed in our laboratory for researching the robotic surgical processes for training and actual operation purposes (, see under Invited Talks). The system has the features of tele-manipulation of surgical instruments within a laparoscopy training box, 3D visualization of the training surgical environment within the box, and haptic feedback provision from the interaction of the instruments with objects and experimental surgical environment. This project aims to further develop the control and instrumentation of this setup to closely replicate actual robotic surgical systems. The project involves robot control, design and implementation of mechatronic systems, and development of semi-automated robotic procedures applicable in robotic surgery and training. Accordingly the goals of the project are to realize the control of robots in the Robotic Surgery Training System to emulate the actual movements and capability of robot manipulators in an actual robotic surgical system, to design and develop semi-automated robotic procedures to assist robotic surgery procedures, to develop and evaluate user control units to operate the Robotic Surgery Training System. This project will involve robotic surgeons as co-supervisors of the PhD study.

How to Apply

1. Important Information before you Apply

When applying through the Heriot-Watt on-line system please ensure you provide the following information:

(a) in ‘Study Option’

You will need to select ‘Edinburgh’ and ‘Postgraduate Research’. ‘Programme’ presents you with a drop-down menu. Choose Chemistry PhD, Physics PhD, Chemical Engineering PhD, Mechanical Engineering PhD, Bio-science & Bio-Engineering PhD or Electrical PhD as appropriate and select September 2022 for study option (this can be updated at a later date if required)

(b) in ‘Research Project Information’

You will be provided with a free text box for details of your research project. Enter Title and Reference number of the project for which you are applying and also enter the potential supervisor’s name.

This information will greatly assist us in tracking your application.

Please note that once you have submitted your application, it will not be considered until you have uploaded your CV and transcripts.

Funding Notes

There are a number of scholarships available which offer funding from between 3 and 3.5 years at an average stipend rate of £15,000 per year.


[1] Tugal, H., Gautier, B., Kircicek, M., and Erden, M.S., 2018, “Hand-Impedance Measurement During Laparoscopic Training Coupled with Robotic Manipulators,” IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2018), October 1-5, Madrid, Spain.
[2] Gautier, B., Tugal, H., Tang., B., Nabi, G., and Erden, M.S, 2021, “Real-time 3D tracking of laparoscopy training instruments for assessment and feedback”, Frontiers in Robotics and AI, vol. 8, article 751741, doi: 10.3389/frobt.2021.751741.
[3] Gautier, B., Tugal, H., Benjie, T., Ghulam, N., and Erden, M.S., 2019, “Laparoscopy instrument tracking for single view camera and skill assessment,” IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2019), May 20-24, Montreal, Canada.
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