Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay 

By the megabots, these small scale machines, called microbots are designed to connect together through electromagnetism to form various shapes and perform task cooperatively. The microbots are designed with highly advanced technology to facilitate the communication process between the transmitter and the receivers, as they are controlled by a single neurotransmitter and whoever wears it can control and command the microbots to respond by a thought. They are designed to work at high efficiency, even if the controller does not commands the microbots to do so.

And with these magnetic fields controlled by a gaming controller, the micro-robots can be drived carefully and precisely. They can turn by changing the direction of magnetic fields, roll in a rotating field, even jump and grasp.

The idea is this technique could be used to assemble human organ tissues by arranging blocks of different types of cells in particular patterns. The way these scientists actually fabricate the micro-robots is pretty ingenious. Tiny rare earth magnets are magnetized in a strong magnetic field.

Further benefits from this research may be realized by using numerous microbots together in bioprinting, the creation of a design that can be utilized by a bioprinter to generate tissue and other complex materials in the lab environment.

Furthermore exploring many possibilities in using this micro robotic technique to manipulate individual cells or cell encapsulating building blocks. Magnetic micro robots which are just few millimeters in size, they bend and move in response to applied magnetic fields, controlled using a joystick.

The idea is that devices like this could be used in medical applications. So, this could be sending a device into fluid areas in your body or into your gastrointestinal tract.

For Eg .-A capsule that you could swallow which will go passively through your G.I tract, have no wires attached and at the right moment we can activate a sampling chamber basically to open up and take samples of either stomach or small intestine contents, take biopsy samples of the intestinal wall.

The greatest use of their tiny size is that they could travel through the body to perform tasks that no conventional robot could do. Also, due to their small size ,they can adopt to any situation and evade damage as well as supply reinforced strength when together, this application can do a lot in the medical diagnosis and with uttermost effectively. One special feature that these microbots possess is that other microbots can be tracked having a single microbot also, isn't that cool!?

  • Imagine we want to provide a swarm of these microbots to a target organ we intend, and we can rely on this feature that they will get together, performing their task well.
  • XACT Robotics Ltd., which is a promising medical robotics company, coded microstructures for bottom-up tissue engineering by generating cell encapsulating constructs.

A research group has pioneered that even smaller peanut-shaped magnetic particles exists and under the right magnetic field conditions, they form swarms which can take on different configurations. Each magnetic particle could carry a small amount of drug and be guided towards the intended drug delivery site. So, to make a swarm useful for essential biomedical applications, you would have to keep the swarms aggregated, as we ain't be able to see one single micrometer sized particle but we can see the swarm, so we can keep a track on it.

For eg.- Going through blood vessels ,if your swarm, the overall swarm size is bigger than the blood vessels then it doesn't fits ,so you need to line them up and squeeze through so that's the motivation for being able to control the shape of the swarm.

One day you might also have swarms of magnetic microbots cleaning your teeth. o Another group of researchers has used tiny magnetic robots to clear biofilms, those are communities of bacteria and protective sugar polymers around them. o They typically build up on medical devices, the inside of pipes and on teeth. o Our robot's architecture is not only biocompatible but directly enables cell growth and proliferation on board.

The advantage of magnetic fields is that it's a very scalable technique. So, we can make magnetic microbots that are single cell size and we can make them that are centimeters in size and principles behave similarly, it pulls of a lots of functionalities.

Its ultimate goal is to be a cure ,not merely treatment by repairing or replacing tissues and organs that fails due to disease, genetic errors, congenital abnormalities ,or traumatic injury, which is tried to be done with the help of micro-robots.

Towards soft micro bio robots for cellular and chemical delivery -

  • These millimeter sized robots are made using helmholtz coils to produce uniform, rotating magnetic fields, which drive the robot's helical motion, we fabricate several sizes of swimming robots and characterize their motion.
  • The robots are infused with nutrient rich media and store fuel needed to sustain cellular functions.
  • Bacterial cell being cultured on robots .These cells actively manufacture a florescent protein.
  • Cells remain attached to the robots and viable during and after transport.

Let us now see the useful functions and types of these micro robots which helps in their potent towards medical diagnosis -

  • Robot-B: Has many attractive features such as cross pollination, search and rescue missions may be after natural disasters, surveillance, high resolution weather and climate mapping, traffic monitoring, environmental monitoring, etc.
  • Milli robot: By using external magnetic field, it can made to move in a lot of different directions, suits for medication inside the human body.
  1. Researchers hope to transport medication to required parts of the body, introducing it into the body either by swarming the robots, or inserting in the body through a small opening in the skin.
  2. From there it can move to the digestive tract, or to the bladder for using the robots in diagnostic purposes.

The Bubble jet microrobot-smaller than a millimeter. The robot is made from such flexible materials that it keep bending or deformed without breaking. Has tiny infrared LED on board, allowing the micro robot through the body, delivering medicines and used in surgical procedure.

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