Researchers became interested in using technology developed by NASA in the field of telepresence and virtual reality to enhance surgeon dexterity in micro surgeries. Ames Research Center and Stanford Research Institute robotocists and virtual reality experts in collaboration with the NASA researchers developed a dexterous telemanipulator designed for hand surgery.

The concept of a DataGlove (a wired glove that uses fiber optics to determine the position of the hand and the finger) and the object oriented programming language to manipulate 3D visual data was invented.

Fisher, Rosen and Phil Green from NASA-Ames-Stanford Research Institute collaborated to design the telemanipulator for hand surgery Richard Satava joined this team and recognized that the telepresence surgery prototype is well suited for the ciinical use in the field of laproscopic surgery.

1980 – Healthcare robotics begins linking NASA research