Data transmission with fibre optic in surgical robotic systems

15th November 2023
Paige West

In the medical device sector, there is a growing emphasis on surgical robotic systems designed to enhance the precision of surgeries.

These complex devices depend on dependable data transmission that combines rapid speed with low latency. Special fibre optic connections are essential to meet these requirements. The connectors used in these systems encounter various challenges.

Data transmission challenges in operating theatres

Operating theatres present a challenging environment for data transmission. Connectors must deliver high-speed data transfer and be immune to interference, including electromagnetic disturbances. Fibre optic connections are key in these settings due to their speed and reliability.

Key considerations for fibre optic data transmission connectors

  • Miniaturisation and space constraints: surgical robotic systems have limited space, requiring connectors that are compact and do not hinder the robot's movement
  • Durability and resistance: these connectors need to endure physical stress, like vibrations or accidental impacts, that can occur during surgeries
  • Sterilisation compatibility: it’s crucial that surgical instruments, including connectors, can be sterilised without compromising their functionality
  • Data integrity: for high-precision surgeries, maintaining data integrity is vital. Interfaces must ensure consistent and reliable communication
  • Electromagnetic compatibility: to prevent interference from nearby electronic equipment, connectors must balance electromagnetic compatibility with the capability for high data transmission rates

ODU designs connectors that comply with the stringent requirements of the MDR and IEC 60-601-1 standard.

ODU's fibre optic connectors are well-suited for surgical robotic systems. They are designed to be compact, durable, easy to sterilise, and capable of high-performance data transmission, even in environments with significant electromagnetic interference. For instance, using Expanded Beam Performance technology, these connectors achieve high data rates with very low attenuation.

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