Awarded second place in the Graduate Image of Research Contest 2015
Semi-finalist in the Graduate Image of Research Contest 2015
Our research involves providing sensory feedback to people with upper limb loss. In this photograph, we have an unimpaired subject testing our low-cost, 3D-printed skin stretch mechanism to provide people with upper limb loss a way to know the location of their fingers without having to constantly look at it. The user can move the fingers on his prosthesis myoelectrically--through the use of sensors that measure the electrical activity from his muscles. Upon moving a finger, a small contact pad adhered to the skin and mechanically coupled to the fingers motor via a fishing line will stretch the skin an amount proportional to the angle of the finger. The lack of this jointlocation sense, known as proprioception, is one of the leading causes of prosthesis abandonment. Through this skin stretch mechanism, we give proprioception back to the user in a way that is inexpensive, energy efficient, small, simple, and intuitive. Due to its simplicity and inexpensiveness, we can apply this mechanism to any existing myoelectric prosthesis, and have plans to integrate it with prostheses not only in the US, but in developing countries as well.
Logan Wan, Mary Nguyen, Brandon Boyce, Patrick Slade, Tim Bretl
Copyright 2015 Aadeel Akhtar
Aadeel Akhtar, “Bionic,” Image of Research: Celebrating Student Research at Illinois, accessed September 25, 2017, http://imageofresearch.omeka.net/items/show/93.