Homography-based Visual Servoing with Remote Center of Motion for Semi-autonomous Robotic Endoscope Manipulation


The dominant visual servoing approaches in Minimally Invasive Surgery (MIS) follow single points or adapt the endoscope’s field of view based on the surgical tools’ distance. These methods rely on point positions with respect to the camera frame to infer a control policy. Deviating from the dominant methods, we formulate a robotic controller that allows for image-based visual servoing that requires neither explicit tool and camera positions nor any explicit image depth information. The proposed method relies on homography-based image registration, which changes the automation paradigm from point-centric towards surgical-scene-centric approach. It simultaneously respects a programmable Remote Center of Motion (RCM). Our approach allows a surgeon to build a graph of desired views, from which, once built, views can be manually selected and automatically servoed to irrespective of robot-patient frame transformation changes. We evaluate our method on an abdominal phantom and provide an open source ROS Moveit integration for use with any serial manipulator.

2021 International Symposium on Medical Robotics (ISMR)