Manual manipulation of small, fragile objects, such as surgical needles, specialized medical devices (stents), and soft biological tissues, requires precise sensing and modulation of interaction forces to prevent unintended damage. Due the magnitude of tool–object interaction forces (5–50 mN) and the length of instruments used during manual micromanipulation, force and tactile information—regarded by many as essential for precise, dexterous micromanipulation—are very difficult, if not impossible, to perceive without haptic feedback.

Several attempts have been made to incorporate force sensors into surgical tools for haptic feedback, including the use of embedded optical fiber-Bragg grating sensors [1], soft liquid-embedded tactile sensors [2], and silicon based strain gauges [3]. These solutions, though effective in research experiments, have proven difficult to implement in practice due to expensive sensor fabrication processes (precisely machining instruments to install sensors), sensor installation challenges (mounting compliant sensors to...

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