Digital Tbucket Tank (DTT)

Micromachines for exploring the human body

Today again from the series Star Trek sends greetings or Nanites 2.0. We recently reported on the development of micro-robots (Controlling a microscopic robot inside the body. Promising first test results). The developments in the field seem to have picked up speed very strongly.    



Researchers at the Swiss Technical University ETH Zurich have succeeded in building a miniature medical robot out of metal and plastic using 3D lithography. The resulting robot constructions are no more than a quarter of a millimeter long and can be controlled by a magnetic field in medical applications.



The use of magnetic fields for control purposes means that micromachines must be constructed at least partially from magnetic metal parts. Polymers, in turn, can be used to build flexible and soft parts of these devices. It is important that the plastics used can dissolve inside the body. In containers made from such substances, for example, drugs could be introduced selectively and precisely into tissue. Researchers have made these microrobots from a "shape" with grooves. Using the electrochemical deposition technique, the scientists filled some of the grooves with metal and others with polymers. Then the mold was dissolved and only the construction of the micro-machine remained. A publication on Swiss performance was published in Nature Communications published.