© Photo | TRUMPF

A table for every posi­tion

An oper­ating table is more than a couch. It is a complex medical system that has to be versa­tile, stable and easy to operate. It helps here to have the right drives

Every day in modern oper­ating rooms, surgeons are performing ever more complex medical proce­dures. In doing so, they also trust in state-of-the-art tech­nology at the oper­ating table. It has to be reli­able, stable and flex­ible so that the surgeons can fully concen­trate on their true job. For in modern medi­cine, the table is far more than a mere surface for the patient to lie on. It has to be adjustable to the most diverse oper­a­tion scenarios – accu­rately and quickly at that. This is a chal­lenge that was encoun­tered by the medical tech­nology experts of Trumpf and the drive special­ists of ebm-papst when devel­oping the TruSystem 7500 oper­ating table. The first contact between the two compa­nies took place already in the 1990s. Since 2005 the two sides have combined their exper­tise in a co-oper­a­tion.

The table these experts devel­oped is flex­ible, reli­able and user-friendly, thereby fulfilling the strin­gent require­ments of real-world appli­ca­tions. It can be conve­niently controlled by remote, and table posi­tions config­ured once can be saved and called up again. “Achieving the desired perfor­mance data for the gearbox and control system while taking into consid­er­a­tion cost-effec­tive­ness was one of the greatest chal­lenges”, explains Philipp Rauch, the person respon­sible for the sales of drive tech­nology in the medical and labo­ra­tory tech­nology segment at ebm-papst St. Georgen. The installed brush­less internal rotor direct current motors enable fast and smooth accel­er­a­tion and braking. This way the digital inputs can be imple­mented with mechan­ical reli­a­bility. The modular design of the ECI 63 drives used permits various modi­fi­ca­tions. Thus gear­boxes, drive motors, sensors and brakes can be config­ured for their indi­vidual planned use. The drives are partic­u­larly reli­able, since even power fail­ures and tech­nical defects do not impair their func­tion.

More­over, the compact compo­nents enable the base and table column to be built in a way that saves an extreme amount of space. That guar­an­tees the surgeons a great amount of legroom and thereby also makes their work easier. The heart of the table control system is the compact drive system networked via CAN bus. This bus solu­tion provides for fast and effi­cient commu­ni­ca­tion of the control elec­tronics. More­over, the control system is in contact with other devices and thereby prevents colli­sions when the table is moving. Along with this, however, the installed drives fulfil all criteria concerning elec­tro­mag­netic compat­i­bility (EMC). This means that, unlike mobile tele­phones, which are unde­sir­able in hospi­tals, they do not have a nega­tive impact on other elec­tronic devices – a crite­rion that is poten­tially of vital impor­tance.

The design of the table follows the human anatomy; the table is segmented in accor­dance with the body’s shape. By means of its stability and design, the table can liter­ally put every patient in the right posi­tion. The table can carry up to 360 kilo­grams and move into any posi­tion. Thus it also safely brings patients into posi­tions in which either the head or the legs have to be the highest point of the body. The customers are satis­fied, as Philipp Rauch knows: “Feed­back has been entirely posi­tive due to the high adjust­ment speed and the many flex­ible config­u­ra­tion options.” The table success­fully holds its ground in real-world appli­ca­tions and is on duty in hospi­tals all around the globe.

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