Vision System for Medical Electrode Inspection

January 16, 2014

 

There have been a few humble times when Cyth's Automated Test solutions are involved in changing lives. 

 

A leading medical device manufacturer requested Cyth's help to devise and build a system for measuring an electrode designed to be implanted directly in the brain of patients in a treatment called Deep Brain Stimulation. These precision-made electrodes are used to deliver electrical signals directly into the brain or spinal cord to interfere with errant signals in Parkinson's sufferers which cause uncontrollable, violent, and painful tremors of muscles throughout the extremeties.  Any defect in the electrode surface or the spacing of its features could cause it to malfunction or degrade over time.

 

The customer asked Cyth to develop a device that will clamp the electrode and hold the part taut with a precise amount of tension.  Then after reading the serial number and model number with a barcode reader, the system would automatically move to a specified height designated by settings in a text file where the inspection was to begin, and move from one end of the electrode to the other at a prescribed speed to inspect and measure the entire electrode on all sides.

 

The movement profile was extremely critical to the measurement, since the spacing had to be correct from one end to the other over a distance just over 1 meter in length. An error in motion as small as 0.01% can render an incorrect measurement of 0.1 mm... while the resolution of the windings in the electrode was meant to be +/- 0.1mm.  Thus the encoder resolution would have to be better than 0.001mm throughout the entire distance.  Using a top-of-the-line Sony optical linear encoder independently in concert with the closed-loop motor controller delivered the required resolution.

 

To examine the windings of the electrode required the use of two Keyence cameras at 90 Degree angles which enables us to see any defects in the windings and to measure the distance between them.  

 

Traceability of a medical device required daily calibration and certification.  Using a precision machined calibration wire was an obvious solution, but the part would have to be in the 

 

Watch the inspiring video of a man named Andrew with early onset Parkinsons' Disease and his successful use of the BDS electrode process: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBh2LxTW0s0

 

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