Scientists from the University of Sheffield developed an Electrical Impedance Spectroscopy platform for real time cancer diagnostics and wanted to turn this into a commercial product. Maddison was brought in to support the product development including usability studies, industrial design and product engineering.
Challenges and Development
The usability aspects and ergonomics were a challenge as the clinician needs to position the device correctly, operate the controls and interact with the controls, all whilst performing a delicate and invasive procedure. Maddison worked with representative users to position the controls, adjust sight lines and perfect the grip. An iterative approach was taken, with many concepts explored and a number of foam models made and tested. We then narrowed this down to three prime candidates before selecting the optimum industrial design.
Infection control is a critical issue with contact devices such as this. The original concept of sterilisation between uses was abandoned in favour of a single-use disposable sheath. This posed a challenge in preserving very low electrical impedance but benefitted the overall business model for the client.