2010 Summer Project Week BrainLab Aurora Hybrid Navigation

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Key Investigators

  • BWH: Isaiah Norton, Noby Hata
  • Washington University: Dan Marcus


We are developing a surgical navigation hybrid platform using BrainLab VectorVision/vvlink, NDI Aurora EM-navigated sensors, and 3D Slicer/OpenIGTLink. The goal is to exploit the advantages of EM tracking within the framework of the clinically-approved BrainLab system, and eventually to enable the mounting of EM sensors on a wide range of surgical tools. For project week, the objective is to 1) complete the tool cross-registration code and 2) implement a sketch version of tool history tracking.

Approach, Plan

All development work is in 3D Slicer modules (currently internal) and BrainLab/Aurora platform interfacing is provided by OpenIGTLink. EM tool registration is accomplished by pivot calibration. Tool cross-registration will be implemented using ICP fit. The tool history tracking will probably be implemented as a polydata cloud wrapped by a model for now.


- Good planning session with refinement of plan for resection progress tracking.

- Plan for implementation of exclusion area based on the history tracking - which will tie in nicely to exclusion zones for other segmented areas.

- Found code from Junichi that does most of what we want for the visual history tracking; will adapt for our purposes. Code is currently fiducial based, but we may convert to labelmaps.

- Xenios corrected a bug in the BioImageSuite-Slicer transform to give proper tool orientation information.

- Implemented tool cross-registration code; still need to test with the EM system.

Delivery Mechanism

This work will be delivered to the NA-MIC Kit as a Slicer Module