Grippers are routinely used to hold, lift and move organs in laparoscopic operations. They are generally toothed to prevent organs from slipping during retention. Organs held by grippers are always at risk of being damaged by the clamping force. In this study, noncontact grippers working with the Bernoulli principle and using air pressure were developed, and vacuum performance was compared in terms of maximum tissue weight holding capacity. For this purpose, Taguchi method was employed for experimental design and optimization, and Taguchi L16 orthogonal array was selected for experimental design. The experimental parameters were 4 gripper types, 4 air-pressure levels (3.5, 4.5, 5, and 5.5 bar), 4 flow rates (2.2, 2.6, 2.8 and 3 m3/h) and two animal tissue types (ventriculus/gizzard and skin). Values from the experimental procedures were evaluated using signal-to-noise ratio, analysis of variance and three-dimension graphs. An equation was obtained by using 3rd-order polynomial regression model for weight values. Optimization reliability was tested by validation tests and the revealed test results were within the estimated confidence interval. The results obtained from this study are important for future studies in terms of organ injury prevention due to traditional grippers in laparoscopic surgery.
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