New Artificial Skin May Help Robots Feel

Researchers at the University of California at Berkeley have developed an artificial form of skin. It might be used in the future to give robots or people with prosthetic limbs the ability to feel:

The Berkeley group's synthetic skin can either be transferred to another material like a plastic or glass by either directly transferring it over from a flat substrate which is then “rubbed” onto a polymer film made of polyamide. It can also be “rolled” onto the surface using a device that works much like a lint roller in reverse; the fibers are deposited to a sticky surface rather than picked up.

The e-skin can detect pressure in the range from 0 to 15 kilopascals, or similar to the pressure needed to perform normal daily tasks. In other words, when your cyber-being goes to clean the wine glasses from last night's party, it won't break them, and when your robot goes to make you a sandwich, it won't flatten it to the size of your silicon microprocessor.


Link via Geekologie | Image: Paramount

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