Scottish scientists report that they have produced an artificial arm that is “more powerful than the real thing.” (Via MedGadget.)
According to The Scotsman newspaper:
The researchers say their new arm is capable of repeatedly lifting a weight of 10kg up above head height and could do so all day, compared with the average human being who would tire within minutes. The wrists could rotate 360° and anyone using it could perform hundreds of push-ups.
This raises an ethical question: a patient with such an arm could possibly hurt themselves or someone else. As a result, the arm’s power might actually have to be scaled down.
(Kudos to David Gow, the lead developer, for pointing out in the article something Steve Austin [The Six-Million-Dollar Man of television fame] really should have had to worry about, but never did: “You have to attach it to the patient’s body and that could cause damage if the weight is too heavy. It could snap their ribs.”)
(Image: Touch Bionics.)
[tags]bionics, technology, medicine[/tags]