This bionic finger uses touch to see inside human tissue, electronics

News Summary

  • The bionic finger scanned and successfully reproduced a 3D profile of the model tissue's structure, including the location of a "blood vessel" located underneath the "muscle" layer.Finally, the authors tested the bionic finger on a defective electronic device, successfully creating a map of the internal components.
  • The fingers could even tell the difference between rigid and soft internal materials and the soft outer silicone coating.They also created a 3D-printed physical model for human tissue out of three layers of hard polymer (for the "skeleton") and a soft silicone outer layer (for the "muscles").
  • That tactile feedback enables us to recognize a material's shape, surface texture, and stiffness or softness.The smart bionic finger mimics this feedback system.
  • That information, along with where on the surface it was recorded, is then sent to a computer, which translates the data into a 3D map.The authors put their bionic finger to the test using different complex objects.
  • Similarly, optical profilometry is often used to measure the surface's profile and finish, but it only works on transparent materials.When we touch something with our fingers, the skin experiences mechanical deformation such as compression or stretching, which triggers mechanoreceptors to send out electrical impulses.
  • For instance, they tested the finger's ability to detect and map out a rigid letter "A" just beneath a soft silicon layer (see video above), along with other abstract shapes.
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