Robotic/Prosthetic Hand with embedded tactile sensing

Lead Research Organisation: University of Glasgow
Department Name: School of Engineering

Abstract

This project will develop low-cost artificial hands having more sensory functionalities than commercial hands and capable of generating motions like most commercial hands. For sensory functionalities, the project will follow an innovative or intelligent design that allows embedding of tactile sensing embedded in the hand structure. This will be achieved by developing hand structure with multiple channels, which will be filled with transducer or sensing materials to relay the physical stimuli to the electronics embedded in the core of the prosthetic or robotics hand. By using different materials in the channels, it will be possible to simultaneously detect multiple tactile sensing parameters (e.g. touch, pressure, temperature etc.). With simple electronics and frequency domain analysis and artificial intelligence tools, it will be possible to extract additional information such as the textures. Conventionally, discrete sensors and electronics components have been used to cover the outer surface of the limbs (i.e. simply placing or in conformal contact).

More recently approaches to bestow tactile feelings have focussed on flexible and conformable e-skin wrapped around the external surface. An issue with these approaches is that because wear and tear they require frequent replacement of sensors or e-skin, which makes these solutions less affordable. The proposed approach is free from such challenges as the sensing is integrated/embedded in the limb structure. This feature makes the proposed hand more attractive for daily use. The low-cost additive manufacturing and digital technology route will be adopted in this work. The rapid prototyping tools such as 3D scanning and 3D printing, make it easy to meet the requirement related to customization and replacements.

Publications

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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/R512266/1 01/10/2017 30/09/2021
1953581 Studentship EP/R512266/1 01/10/2017 30/09/2021 Markellos Ntagios