Treatment for deeply seated brain tumors requires developing articulated surgical robots that are capable of navigating through narrow spaces with minimal damage to the surrounding tissues. These robots need to be low-cost to make them patient-specific as well as to reduce the health-care cost. This in turn requires lowering the manufacturing costs of the robots so that robots can be discarded after the surgical procedure. Injection molding is a mass manufacturing process for making low-cost plastic parts. We have developed a four degree-of-freedom surgical robot with multiple joints that can be manufactured using injection molding. We have designed a novel compliant mechanism to provide multiple articulated joints. The robot is currently actuated with servo motors located outside the robot that drive the joints using passive cables. Cables are routed through the robot to reduce the cross coupling between the joints and enable independent joint actuation. By detaching the actuation from the robot structure, we have made the robot suitable for operating under continuous magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

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