Any hand prosthesis can feel with an e-gloveSeptember 7, 2019
Artificial parts of the body that behave almost like natural ones are a very important element in restoring quality of life for amputated people – we are just observing another important step on this path techadvices.
Scientists are very dedicated to this matter, which is why we regularly hear about new inventions, but not all have such chances of success as achieving researchers from Purdue University. And we are talking about a special glove that can be put on a hand prosthesis, thanks to which it begins to imitate the sensory abilities of the human body. Of course, the gateway to this new invention was opened by the progress in the field of flexible electronics, thanks to which researchers could look at dentures in a completely different way.
For some time, we can see dentures covered with electronic skin with a sense of touch or the ability to feel pain, but the team from Purdue wants to approach the topic from a slightly different angle. Namely, to provide a solution compatible with commercially available prostheses of various sizes and shapes, providing each of them with new capabilities – scientists began with an ordinary nitrile glove, equipped with flexible sensors, and then finished it with soft rubber, imitating the appearance and tactile sensations of the human hand.
Sensors have the ability to feel the pressure, temperature and humidity of everything they come into contact with. The data is collected and transferred to a smart watch on the wrist that displays the readings in real time and at the same time wirelessly transmits them to an external analyzing device. According to the researchers: – We have developed an innovative idea soft to the touch and equipped with sensors e-glove, matching many shapes of dentures.
– It is equipped with sensors collecting data such as pressure, temperature, humidity, temperature and electrophysiological biosignals, at the same time it looks like a human hand and is soft and warm as natural. In the future, it will also be interesting to add additional sensors that will improve the interface of our solution, for example through sound information or vibrations. In short, the glove has enormous potential, and although scientists still have a long way to go to complete and commercialize the idea, it promises to be a breakthrough.