Extended Kalman filter for online soft tissue characterization based on Hunt-Crossley contact model

Bingbing Gao, Yongmin Zhong, Kup Sze Choi

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Real-time soft tissue characterization is significant to robotic assisted minimally invasive surgery for achieving precise haptic control of robotic surgical tasks and providing realistic force feedback to the operator. This paper presents a nonlinear methodology for online soft tissue characterization. An extended Kalman filter (EKF) is developed based on dynamic linearization of the nonlinear H–C contact model in terms of system state for online characterization of soft tissue parameters. To handle the resultant linearization modelling error, an innovation orthogonal EKF is further developed by incorporating an adaptive factor in the EKF filtering to adaptively adjust the innovation covariance according to the principle of innovation orthogonality. Simulation and experimental results as well as comparison analysis demonstrate that the proposed methodology can effectively characterize soft tissue parameters, leading to dramatically improved accuracy comparing to recursive least square estimation. Further, the proposed methodology also requires a smaller computational load and can achieve the real-time performance for soft tissue characterization.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104667
JournalJournal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021


  • Contact model
  • Extended Kalman filter
  • Parameter estimation
  • Real-time performance
  • Soft tissue characteristics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials


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