Digital Twins in Healthcare: The Next Level in Medical Simulation

What is a “Digital Twin”?

A digital representation of a physical system or object. Digital Twins have existed in various forms and models for decades. The idea of a “digital twin” was born at NASA in the 1960s as a “living model” of the Apollo 13 mission.

Digital Twins in Health & Life Sciences

Over the last five years, there have been a significant number of Digital Twin initiatives in science and research.

Characteristics of Digital Twins

According to “A Complete Guide to Digital Twins” ( there are five characteristics that typically define a Digital Twin:

  • Connectivity: A digital twin is based on connectivity. It enables connection between the physical element and its digital counterpart. The sensors create the connectivity of physical products that obtain, integrate and communicate data using various integration technologies.
  • Homogenization: Digital twins are both the consequence and enabler of homogenization of data. It allows the decoupling of information from its physical form.
  • Reprogrammable and Smart: Digital twins automatically enable re-programmability through sensors, artificial intelligence techniques and predictive analysis.
  • Digital traces: Digital twin technologies leave digital traces. The trails are helpful to diagnose the source of the problem that occurred in case of machine malfunctions.
  • Modularity: Modularity is referred to the design and customization of products and production modules. The addition of modularity to functional models helps manufacturers gain the ability to tweak machines and models.

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