Dr. Lampotang receives J.S. Gravenstein Award from Society for Technology in Anesthesia

Samsun Lampotang

We are excited to announce that Samsun (Sem) Lampotang, Ph.D., FSSH, FAIMBE, has received the prestigious 2022 J.S. Gravenstein Award from the Society for Technology in Anesthesia (STA).

The award is named for Joachim S. “Nik” Gravenstein, M.D. (1925-2009), Lampotang’s mentor and a driving force in advancing anesthesia technology, patient simulation, and anesthesia patient safety for more than 30 years.

Gravenstein founded UF’s Department of Anesthesiology in 1959. His extensive list of accomplishments includes leading a team of scientists and engineers in the creation of “Stan” the Human Patient Simulator and the Virtual Anesthesia Machine (VAM). Lampotang, the director of UF’s Center for Safety, Simulation & Advanced Learning Technologies (CSSALT), was part of the team that conceived the patented UF technology behind the Human Patient Simulator.

Lampotang currently holds the endowed professorship in Gravenstein’s name, the Joachim S. Gravenstein Professorship of Anesthesiology. He is also director for simulation innovation for the Office of Educational Affairs/Office of Medical Education and director of the Simulation Core of the UF Clinical & Translational Science Institute.

Joachim S. "Nik" Gravenstein, MD

Gravenstein was a founding member and former president of the STA, which presents the award annually to an individual who has made significant contributions to the advancement of anesthesia technology throughout their career.

“The award is especially meaningful as it is named after my mentor,” Lampotang said. “I am extremely honored and it is humbling to receive the same award as John Severinghaus, Takuo Aoyagi (who discovered the principle behind pulse oximetry), Maynard Ramsey III (the inventor of the noninvasive blood pressure monitor), and the previous esteemed awardees who helped make anesthesiology a model of patient safety.”

The inventions that Gravenstein helped to create at UF remain some of the most widely used medical simulation devices nationally and internationally. Lampotang, a mechanical engineer by training who is a named inventor on 45 issued U.S. patents, has carried the torch of innovation forward. The simulation and technology portfolio has become diversified to include ventriculostomy, intuitive three-dimensional visualized prostate biopsy, virtual coaches for simulation-based mastery training without human instructors, and a rapid simulator development platform for mixed-reality simulators. It includes funded collaborations with UF Health Jacksonville and the UF Health Proton Therapy Institute. Recently, Lampotang led a team in designing a low-cost, open-source ventilator during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Timothy Morey, M.D., chair of the Department of Anesthesiology, said the award was particularly meaningful given the close working relationship that Gravenstein and Lampotang had over many years.

“The work has held over the test of time,” Morey said.

Lampotang will receive the award during the STA’s annual business meeting in January 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada, where he will deliver a 45-minute presentation about his contributions to the field.