Clifton Park, NY, Jan. 17, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Kitware, a leader in open source software research and development, has released the latest versions of two of its popular medical training and simulation toolkits –  the Interactive Medical Simulation Toolkit (iMSTK) 2.0 and the Pulse Physiology Engine (Pulse) 2.3. Updates to these toolkits include improved models and functionality based on feedback from user and developer communities. Kitware will showcase these latest features and improvements at the International Meeting on Simulation in Healthcare (IMSH) in San Diego, January 18-22 at booth 912.   

Both iMSTK and Pulse provide the technology to build virtual simulators that can help practicing surgeons, medical students, residents, and nurses to rehearse or plan medical procedures. For example, iMSTK has been used to help medical professionals prepare for biopsies, resectioning, radiosurgery, and laparoscopy without compromising patient safety in the operating room. It can also help accredit potential surgeons in basic skills for laparoscopy, endoscopy or robotic surgery. Pulse provides necessary physiologic feedback for clinicians training to provide life-saving medical treatment, such as for hemorrhage, tension pneumothorax, airway trauma, ventilator use and settings, and anaphylaxis. 

“Kitware’s medical computing team is dedicated to advancing research solutions in the medical community,” said Andinet Enquobahrie, the director of medical computing at Kitware. “Whether we are collaborating with a university on research, working with our communities to improve our software platforms, or partnering with another company to integrate our software into their products and projects, our goal is to provide application developers the tools they need to develop powerful applications for medical skill training.”

iMSTK 2.0 Improves Features, Efficiency of Physics, Collision and Rendering Modules

iMSTK is a free, open source toolkit that offers product developers and researchers all the software components they need to build and test virtual simulators for medical training and planning. Release 2.0 offers improved functionality with many new features as well as refactored modules that address the ease-of-use, and extendability of the API. Specifically, it has greatly improved the features as well as the efficiency of the physics, collision modules, and rendering modules. 

Here are some release highlights:

  • New octree collision detection adds efficient loose octree data structure for broad phase collision detection
  • New rigid body dynamics support for simpler geometrical shapes and surface meshes, and collision between them
  • Multithreading support added using Intel Thread Building Blocks (TBB)
  • Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) for simulating fluids with varied viscosity and surface tension
  • Extended simulation modes that allow iMSTK to work as a physics backend allowing easier integration into external software
  • Improved Vulkan backend, on-screen text rendering, CMake build and installation, and more.

Pulse 2.3 Improves Models and Functionality to Advance the Engine for Customer Needs

Pulse is a free, open source physiology engine that is used to rapidly prototype virtual simulation applications. These applications simulate whole-body human physiology through adult computational physiology models. Release 2.3 includes updates that were the result of Kitware’s work with users to improve models and functionality of the engine.

Here are some release highlights:

  • C# API updates used in our Unity Asset, such as support for more actions, custom data requests to retrieve any data calculated by pulse, patient creation including chronic conditions
  • Magic Leap is now a supported platform by our the Pulse Unity Asset version 2.0
  • Significant respiratory model updates, such as changing the standard respiration rate from 16 bpm to 12 bpm; use of ideal body weight for determining lung volumes; refactored respiratory muscle driver with a new waveform, and more.

For more information about iMSTK, visit the iMSTK website. For more information about Pulse, visit the newly redesigned Pulse website or sign up for the Pulse newsletter. To receive the latest updates on all of Kitware’s software platforms, subscribe to our blog.

About Kitware

Since 1998, Kitware has been providing software research and development services to customers ranging from startups to Fortune 500 companies, including government and academic laboratories worldwide. Kitware’s core areas of expertise are computer vision, data and analytics, high-performance computing and visualization, medical computing, and software process. The company has grown to more than 150 employees, with offices in Clifton Park, NY; Arlington, VA; Carrboro, NC; Santa Fe, NM; and Lyon, France. For more information visit

Jillian Cutrone
Kitware, Inc.