Sensitive Artificial Skin For Humans, Not Robots
Robots have all the luck. Researchers have been working overtime to make sure that robots will be able to soft, sensitive skin that feels pain and pressure. Now kindly DARPA boffins are making sure that human beings will also have sensitive artificial skin.
(NASA High Tech Skin)
In 2005, Goddard technologist Vladimir Lumelsky worked on sensor embedded skin coverings for robots. This high-tech skin is essential for robots doing space exploration, because humans and robots will work together under different conditions. Robots need to be sensitive.
(Pressure-sensing and temperature-sensing network)
Takao Someya lead a group of University of Tokyo researchers that same year in creating a robotic skin consisting of pressure-sensing and temperature-sensing networks laminated together. The resulting artificial skin can detect both properties simultaneously. The transistors used in the circuits and the semiconductors both use "organic" materials based on chains of carbon atoms, so maybe robots will "feel" a little bit more human.
(Nanotubes may create artificial skin that "feels" good)
How will artificial skin conduct sensation for human beings? Vertically aligned carbon nanotubes can make the surface of prosthetic devices feel like the the covering you were born with. In the example shown above, a nanotube is shown delicately balanced on top of gold filaments, and threaded through a rubbery polymer. The polymer/nanotube skin will transfer heat from the surface to the sensor network below as quickly as your skin communicates this information. The nanotubes enhance the piezoelectric effect inherent in the polymer. The sensors can then generate a signal to the brain.
Some robot skin already seems almost good enough to wear; see Robot Skin Soft Like Yours for fembots. Under pressure? Robots have it covered - see Robots Get Pressure-Sensitive Skin - if you don't mind looking like the Tin Man.
From Synth Skin for Robo-Limbs; via Nanotubes Make Synthetic Skin Feel Your Pain.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 1/9/2008)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
tDCS Jumpstarts Your Future
'We invented a scanner that can change the labyrinthine neural connections of the brain by tiny electronic impulses…'- Edmond Hamilton, 1948.
RealView Interactive Live Medical Holography
Surgeons can see an organ in its entirety in a live image.
Child Trafficked To Britain By Organleggers
'The doctor took him apart with exquisite care, like disassembling a flexible, fragile, tremendously complex jigsaw puzzle.'- Larry Niven, 1967.
Google Vs. Death
Who wants to live forever?
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Haute Cuisine On International Space Station
'The gas gave sufficient heat for the culinary apparatus...'
Tongue Mouse Created By Valve Engineer
'He pressed hard with his tongue against his right upper first molar.'
K5 Autonomous Data Machine The Future Of Mall Security
''Halt!' A robot guard appeared...'
RF Safe-Stop Shuts Cars Off
'...a police control-override.'
Army's New Bird-Like Surveillance UAV
'The prototype blue-bellied, gray-backed tracer-bird with the wide-angle eye...'
Honda's Tumblebug - The UNI-CUB beta
'A tumblebug does not give a man dignity...'
NASA's LADEE Enters Lunar Orbit
'... dust normally on the surface picks up and keeps a charge.'
3D Printing An Entire Car
"... Almost as good as the original it was printed from."
Aldebaran Robot Talks Like C3PO - Almost
'See Vee Threepio - Vee for versatility - at your service...'
Google's Skin Tattoo Lie Detector
'Three and a half centimetres in diameter, permanently fixed in the centre of his forehead.'
inFORM Dynamic Shape Output Device
Like that pushpin device you remember, but supercharged.
Owlet Vitals, The Future Of Baby Monitoring
'In every diaper there is a fine copper wire...'
Robert Heinlein, Your Personal Electric Helicopter Will Be Ready In 2016
"They were half way home when a single flyer, hopping free in a copter harness, approached the little parade."
WildCat Runs Faster Than You, Untethered
'...moving with such drifting ease that it was like a single solid cloud of black-grey smoke blown at him in silence.' Almost.
HiBot's ACM-R5H Robot Video Shows Graceful Terminator-Style Swimming
'No! No! Aaaaaaarrrrrrgh!'
tDCS Jumpstarts Your Future
'We invented a scanner that can change the labyrinthine neural connections of the brain by tiny electronic impulses...'.
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories