InnerOptic Technology, a startup focused on visualization technology to be used by surgeons, has landed an additional federal grant for research purposes.

The Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) grant from the National Science Foundation is an extension of an earlier contract and increases its value to $550,000.

The funds will be used for further development of a 3D device InnerOptic calls the Laparoscope. The device provides real-time imagery of the area where minimally invasive surgery of the abdomen, or laparoscopic surgery, is being performed.

InnerOptic is developing patented technology that will enable surgeons to “see” the procedure they are performing through a head-mounted display rather than having to watch a TV monitor.

The company is also developing cancer-detection capability.

The federal grant also represents a 50 percent match of funds that it raised from the private sector. The amounts were not disclosed.

“We are excited to be able to continue development of this technology, which we believe will dramatically improve minimally invasive surgery,” said Kurtis Keller, InnerOptic’s co-founder and president.

InnerOptic, which was launched in 2002, utilizes technology licensed from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

 InnerOptic and RTI International received a $234,000 grant in 2005 for further development of the 3D technology.