Fiber optics are omnipresent in medicine, helping improve procedures and outcomes. Here we dig into one specific technology making use of fiber optics: optical coherence tomography. As a bonus, you also get to read about my flexible sigmoidoscopy, performed nearly 30 years ago and burned into my mind forever.
Biophotonics, when applied to medical imaging or robotic surgery, significantly advances healthcare by offering a multifaceted approach to diagnosis, treatment, and surgery while improving patient care and outcomes.
LEDs are semiconductor devices that convert electrical energy into light, with various colors determined by the semiconductor material used; they span UV, visible, and IR wavelengths, offering versatility in applications from electronics to healthcare.
Hyperspectral imaging is a rapidly developing technique with a multitude of spectral imaging systems having been explored over the last few decades. These systems are being researched for their potential use in the life sciences industry.
Scientists at Sydney Nano and the School of Physics have developed a photonic radar system capable of delivering contactless, high-definition detection of vital signs. This technology has the potential to be utilized in intensive care units and nursing homes, and for individuals who suffer from sleep apnea or babies with breathing difficulties.
In the field of complex medical instruments and procedures, the use of fiber optics has become crucial in creating new and advanced sensors. These sensors have the potential to enhance the precision and accuracy of machinery, including automated surgical robots.
Environmental sensors, spurred on by the rapidly developing Internet of Things, are becoming better at evaluating soil chemical composition, water purity, air quality, and more. They are also being used in more unique ways, both personally and by industry.
Quantum computing is relatively new but is growing by leaps and bounds. Currently, there are more than 600 companies and more than 30 national labs and government agencies worldwide that are developing the technology. Its future’s so bright it’s got to wear shades – but are we ready for its inevitable rise?