A successful demonstration has shown that medical surgery can be live-streamed in VR to help students learn.
The project was led by London-based developer Room One in collaboration with Ericsson, BT, King’s College London (KCL) and OPTO. The demonstration was held at Ericsson’s Innovation Day in Aachen, Germany.
The demonstration follows Mobile World Congress 2017, where a surgeon successfully controlled a robot arm using a connected glove. The glove controlled the arm at ultra-latency using 5G.
The demo consisted of an expert conducting an examination using the robot arm, with the video and audio being livestreamed to other participants.
The participants could watch and hear the demo using headsets, but were also provided with haptic feedback pads that provided them with a real-time simulation of the tactile feedback produced by the arm.
The 5G technology needed to drive the system was developed by Ercisson, BT and KCL, while OPTO supplied the hardware. Room One designed the specialised camera rig and the livestreaming tech, as well as the haptic feedback pads.
“We are only at the start of what is possible”
Melissa Dore, COO of Room One, said:
“VR will have a transformative impact on all aspects of our lives, including learning and mentoring, and this is a demonstration of just that.
“The Room One team is now working on a CGI-powered version, providing surgery students with a fully immersive environment to practice surgery.”
Mahdi Yahya, President of Room One, said:
“The connectivity revolution is bigger than the industrial revolution. We are only at the start of what is possible. Remote surgery over the Internet; the creation of fully immersive virtual worlds; homes, cars, and phones that speak to each other instantly over the network. As creatives, designers and technologists, it is our duty to realise this future.”
Peter Marshall, Head of MBB, UK and Ireland at Ericsson, said:
“Over the last 18 months Ericsson has been developing a strong relationship with Room One. We both have ambitions to show the value of VR/AR in a connected society where immersive experiences become the norm.
“This co-creation approach and the evolving ecosystem of various partners are the key ingredients to developing 5G, and allow us to provide new services, applications and devices. Having the opportunity to work with Room One is a great addition to this.”