The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History said this week that it has acquired a donated 1989 prototype of Robodoc, the 1990s groundbreaking robotic surgical device that was the brainchild of Sacramento orthopedic surgeon Dr. William Bargar and the late Sacramento veterinarian Dr. Howard “Hap” Paul.
Think Surgical Inc. of Fremont also donated about 6 cubic feet of related archival material.
Museum officials said the donated prototype will become part of the museum’s permanent Division of Medicine and Science collections. There are currently no plans for a display.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Robodoc in 1998. Since then, it has been used in more than 28,000 procedures worldwide, according to museum officials.