الجمعة، 11 سبتمبر، 2015

Prosthetic Hand Lets Paralysed Man 'Feel'


A prosthetic hand wired directly to the brain has allowed a paralysed man to "feel".
It is the first time a person has been able to feel physical sensations through a prosthetic device.
The technology is so advanced the 28-year-old man could even identify which mechanical finger was being gently touched.
The system was designed by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which is part of the US Department of Defense.
Programme manager Justin Sanchez said: "We've completed the circuit.
"Prosthetic limbs that can be controlled by thoughts are showing great promise, but without feedback from signals travelling back to the brain it can be difficult to achieve the level of control needed to perform precise movements.
"By wiring a sense of touch from a mechanical hand directly into the brain, this work shows the potential for seamless bio-technological restoration of near-natural function."
Wires were run from the anonymous volunteer's motor cortex to the mechanical hand, which allowed him to control it with his thoughts.

But because the hand contains "sophisticated" torque sensors, physical touch sensations were also transmitted to the participant's brain.
The volunteer was blindfolded and the researchers gently touched his finger intermittently.
He reported their touch with close to 100% accuracy.
He added that it felt like his own hand was being touched.

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