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Concentric Tube Robots: The State of the Art and Future Directions

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Robotics Research

Part of the book series: Springer Tracts in Advanced Robotics ((STAR,volume 114))

Abstract

Seven years ago, concentric tube robots were essentially unknown in robotics, yet today one would be hard pressed to find a major medical robotics forum that does not include several presentations on them. Indeed, we now stand at a noteworthy moment in the history of these robots. The recent maturation of foundational models has created new opportunities for research in control, sensing, planning, design, and applications, which are attracting an increasing number of robotics researchers with diverse interests. The purpose of this review is to facilitate the continued growth of the subfield by describing the state of the art in concentric tube robot research. We begin with current and proposed applications for these robots and then trace their origins (some aspects of which date back to 1985), before proceeding to describe the state of the art in terms of modeling, control, sensing, and design. The paper concludes with forward-looking perspectives, noting that concentric tube robots provide rich opportunities for further research, yet simultaneously appear poised to become viable commercial devices in the near future.

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Acknowledgments

The authors acknowledge support for this work from the National Science Foundation (IIS-1054331) and the National Institutes of Health (R01 EB017467 and R21 EB017952).

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Gilbert, H.B., Rucker, D.C., Webster III, R.J. (2016). Concentric Tube Robots: The State of the Art and Future Directions. In: Inaba, M., Corke, P. (eds) Robotics Research. Springer Tracts in Advanced Robotics, vol 114. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-28872-7_15

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