The world of robotics continues in the search to improve the living conditions of those people who suffered amputations or severe problems in their extremities.
Now, a team of developers invented a new hand that has artificial muscles and tendons that will incredibly facilitate people’s ability when it begins to be tested and applied to them.
To this we must add that they can be manufactured in a simple way, since They are a product of 3D printing.
Researchers from ETH Zurich have 3D printed a robotic hand, using a technique that combines soft and rigid plastic and is part of the growing field of ‘soft robotics’ pic.twitter.com/3b6gc6WFx3
— Reuters (@Reuters) November 16, 2023
To combat the lack of a senior member, a team from the Federal Polytechnic School of Zurich (ETH Zurich according to the institution’s acronym) published in the journal Nature a disruptive development: the process of creating a 3D prosthesis with artificial tendons and muscles.
It is a complex project, with levels and sublevels of development among which muscles, tendons and ligaments appear specifically designed to create a functional hand and that allows people to use it without any problem.
The impression uses slow curing plastics which are more elastic than others and also allow durability and a series of their own functionalities that give very good results, thus making the technological leap truly notable.
The process is really simple once you have mastered the technique, since curing treatments for the plastic polymers are used while trying to polish the irregularities of the surface to give it that professional finish.
Open Bionics: bionic arms inspired by movies and video games
On the other hand, the American company Open Bionics is one of the leaders in disruptive prostheses. Since 2014, he has been developing bionic limb technologies, including the “Hero Arm” bionic arms.
The project was characterized by its customizable and modular design. In fact, users can choose different color patterns and prosthesis models according to their preferences.
In recent times, Open Bionics has presented increasingly attractive designs of prostheses for the young public and even with a certain appeal for children as well. Moving away from realism, the latest bionic prosthetics are literally inspired by Marvel superheroes and even Star Wars.
For example, the hand of a Jedi lightsaber was designed in collaboration with Lucasfilm’s ILMxLAB and modeled by a 12-year-old boy. Two other designs emulated the characteristic Bionic style of Iron Man’s armor and Elsa’s icy arm from Frozen, which even has its characteristic light blue sparkles.
The superhero prosthetic arm project is part of an update to Open Bionics founder Joel Gibbard’s bionic prosthetic concept.
After creating the Open Hand Project open source, began talking to prosthetic users about what was most important to them in a prosthesis.
Through this process, he determined that people were more concerned about the weight and appearance of the prosthetic hand than the amount of fine motor control it had. This led him to change his approach, imagining a prosthesis like a tool or fashion accessoryrather than a literal interpretation of a human arm.
With a distant development at a technological level but with the same ambition, the young Argentine engineer Gino Tubaro undertook the development of 3D prostheses since 2014 to help thousands of people with limited resources.
Through his Atomic Lab foundation and with thousands of prostheses distributed, Gino Tubaro is responsible for distributing hands and arms made with 3D printers to meet the needs of children and adults with various types of anomalies or amputations, and without having to allocate a peso to cover this need.