A well-designed robot can do any action a human can do. Whether this is an acrobatic performance, or just writing with a pen, there's a robot out there for any single action a human can perform. This ...
A realistic 3D-printed robotic finger using a shape memory alloy (SMA) and a unique thermal training technique has been developed by Florida Atlantic University assistant professor Erik Engeberg, Ph.D.
“We have been able to thermomechanically train our robotic finger to mimic the motions of a human finger, like flexion and extension,” said Engeberg. “Because of its light weight, dexterity and strength, our robotic design offers tremendous advantages over traditional mechanisms, and could ultimately be adapted for use as a prosthetic device, such as on a prosthetic hand.”
Most robotic parts used today are rigid, have a limited range of motion and don’t look lifelike.
In the study, described in an open-access article in the journal Bioinspiration & Biomimetics, Engeberg and his team used a resistive heating process called “Joule” heating that involves the passage of electric currents through a conductor that releases heat.
How to create a robotic finger
The researchers first downloaded a 3-D computer-aided design (CAD) model of a human finger from the Autodesk 123D website (under creative commons license). With a 3-D printer, they created the inner and outer molds that housed a flexor and extensor actuator and a position sensor. The extensor actuator takes a straight shape when it’s heated and the flexor actuator takes a curved shape when heated. They used SMA plates and a multi-stage casting process to assemble the finger. Electric currents flow through each SMA actuator from an electric power source at the base of the finger as a heating and cooling process to operate the robotic finger.
Results from the study showed a rapid flexing and extending motion of the finger and ability to recover its trained shape accurately and completely, confirming the biomechanical basis of its trained shape.
Hi everyone! I wanted to share what I've been working on lately. So I picked up some tough resin a few weeks ago and decided it would be adequately strong for making an RC airplane that could be printed out on my form 1. It took 3 design iterations but this final version is a superb flyer. weighing roughly 60 grams, she is a micro plane but the dihedral wing make her very stable even in a couple kts of breeze. The motor mount/gearbox, wing clamp, and both the rudder and elevator hinges and
As we've mentioned before, we love seeing what truly dedicated nerds can do when given enough time and LEGOs. Nerdist brings us word that a Los Angeles-based artist named Nathan Sawaya has used an estimated 500,000 LEGOs to build an 18-foot replica...
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