Published June 6, 2024 | Version v1
Publication Open

A Human-Scale Clinically Ready Electromagnetic Navigation System for Magnetically Responsive Biomaterials and Medical Devices

  • 1. Multi-Scale Robotics Lab Institute of Robotics and Intelligent Systems ETH Zurich
  • 2. Departament de Ciència dels Materials i Química Física Institut de Química Teòrica i Computacional, University of Barcelona
  • 3. Kantonsspital Aarau AG


Magnetic navigation systems are used to precisely manipulate magnetically responsive materials enabling the realization of new minimally invasive procedures using magnetic medical devices. Their widespread applicability has been constrained by high infrastructure demands and costs. The study reports on a portable electromagnetic navigation system, the Navion, which is capable of generating a large magnetic field over a large workspace. The system is easy to install in hospital operating rooms and transportable through health care facilities, aiding in the widespread adoption of magnetically responsive medical devices. First, the design and implementation approach for the system are introduced and its performance is characterized. Next, in vitro navigation of different microrobot structures is demonstrated
using magnetic field gradients and rotating magnetic fields. Spherical permanent magnets, electroplated cylindrical microrobots, microparticle swarms, and magnetic composite bacteria-inspired helical structures are investigated. The navigation of magnetic catheters is also demonstrated in two challenging endovascular tasks: 1) an angiography procedure and 2) deep navigation within the circle of Willis. Catheter navigation is demonstrated in a porcine model in vivo to perform an angiography under magnetic guidance.


Advanced Materials - 2024 - Gervasoni - A Human‐Scale Clinically Ready Electromagnetic Navigation System for Magnetically.pdf

Additional details


ANGIE – MAgnetically steerable wireless Nanodevices for the tarGeted delivery of therapeutIc agents in any vascular rEgion of the body 952152
European Commission
SOMBOT – Soft Micro Robotics 743217
European Commission