Optical Mechanical Engineering

Developing a non-invasive diagnostic tool for tumor detection

  1. Concept
  2. Solution
  3. Result
  • Concept

    Need for Non-Invasive Method

    Need for Non-Invasive Method

    A common procedure in terms of tumor detection involves a physical screening by a doctor or other such qualified individual.  Upon detection, a series of clinical tests will take place in order to confirm the positive screening results.  The most common procedure used for diagnosis is a biopsy.  A biopsy, though accurate, is a radical and invasive procedure.  When performing an excisional biopsy on the breast, for example, breast mass will be removed leaving behind a potentially deformed breast. The invasive nature of the biopsy procedure and possible negative cosmetic results bring the need for a non- invasive diagnostic tool.

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  • Solution

    Two Design Considerations

    Two Design Considerations

    The purpose of our project is to improve upon a technologically outdated design that was used to detect tumors and determine their malignancy based on mechanical properties. We started by designing a case used to hold the previous iteration of the device.  This case is meant to securely hold the system while maximizing its usability in a medical atmosphere. Our second step was to take a compact load cell and incorporate it into the case design, eliminating the need for the oversized, externally mounted force gauge. These two design considerations will take the previous iteration of the device and enable it to work more efficiently in a professional environment. The 2nd  phase of our project is to take an updated camera and lens and redesign our case to incorporate the new hardware. The camera and lens will fit securely into the case. In conjunction, we will integrate another load cell circuit that utilizes the existing design along with an LED circuit to provide the necessary light to capture images. This updated camera will use a USB connection (as opposed to the firewire connection of the previous model) and provide better image quality.

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  • Result

    Results

    Results

    Thus far, we have completed testing regarding the first phase and the individual components of the second phase of our project.  The force sensor has been tested and a corresponding algorithm has been developed that converts the output voltage to force data.  The LED circuit design has been implemented and works properly with varying light intensities due to the connected potentiometer. The case designed for the first phase of our project has been tested and does not interfere with the images produced by the previous iteration.  The dynamic load applied to the top of the case directly correlates with the force sensor data.  In the following weeks we will connect and assemble all individual components and complete phase two of our project.

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