menu

Segway Inventor Debuts A Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Arm

Segway Inventor Debuts A Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Arm
technology

The DEKA Arm an be can perform complex actions that almost recreate the actual functionality of a human limb.

Leah Gonzalez
  • 13 may 2014


Dean Kamen, the inventor who brought us the Segway, has created a robotic arm that could be controlled by the user’s mind and can perform complex actions and multiple movements simultaneously.

The Food and Drug Administration has just approved the DEKA arm system, a prosthetic limb that is being described as one of the most realistic and human-like prosthetics to date since it brings back almost all functionality of the actual human arm.

The DEKA arm, which the creators are affectionately calling “Luke” after Star Wars character Luke Skywalker who received a robotic arm in one of the Star Wars movies, is about the same shape and weight of a natural adult arm and is capable of performing up to 10 movements.

Electromyogram (EMG) electrodes detect the electrical activity caused by the contracting muscles near the area where the prosthetic is attached. The electrical signals are transmitted by the electrodes to a computer processor in the robotic arm to initiate a specific movement or series of movements.

Aside from the EMG electrodes, the DEKA arm is also fitted with various mechanisms such as switches, and movement and force sensors that work together to make the prosthesis move.

The FDA approved the device after it reviewed data about the project, including the results of a Department of Veterans Affairs study that equipped 36 participants with the DEKA arm to see how they do with the arm when it comes to regular household tasks. The results of the study showed that 90% of the participants were able to do tasks that they could not do with their current prosthetics. These tasks included day-to-day things like preparing food and feeding themselves, using keys and locks, using zippers, and brushing their hair. The robotic arm system can help users handle objects ranging from a grape to a powertool.

The prosthetic arm can be configured for people with limb loss occurring at the shoulder joint, mid-upper or mid-lower arm, but not for those who have lost a limb at the elbow or wrist joint.

The DEKA arm is still being developed further. The project is sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and the U.S. Army Research Office.

DEKA
[h/t]: Business Insider, Defense Systems

technology
Trending

Japanese Face Wash Creates A Perfect Rose Every Time

Arts & Culture
Mobile august 26, 2016

Get A Better Idea Of How You Are Wasting Your Time

The TouchTime app is trying to revolutionize personal task management by providing detailed insight on how to be more efficient

Culture august 26, 2016

London Telephone Box Repurposed As A Tiny Mobile Repair Shop

Tools and supplies to replace broken screens or damage are neatly stowed away in these micro-workrooms

Trending

Get PSFK's Latest Report: Future of Work

See All
Design august 26, 2016

Conceptual Sportswear Created Out Of Futuristic Condom Material

A Dutch fashion designer is experimenting with new methods and fabrics to make high performance clothing

Fashion august 26, 2016

Fashionable Tassel Will Ensure You Never Lose Your Valuables Again

The device is fashion meets connected tech, that will help you keep track of your belongings at all times

PURPLELIST EXPERTS

Fernando Santana

Coworking In Sharing Economy

Syndicated august 26, 2016

Would You Wear Wool Shoes To Save The Environment?

As demand for wool shoes grows, a number of US footwear brands are heading directly to the source: the sheep pastures of New Zealand

Sustainability august 26, 2016

Self-Healing Material Is Fashioned Out Of Squid Teeth

Penn State researchers have devised a new textile that uses organic proteins

Arts & Culture august 26, 2016

Search Engine Turns Your Own Drawings Into Photos

This image-matching software accepts hand-made sketches instead of keywords

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Work
Cultivating The Next Generation Of Leaders
NEW

PSFK Op-Ed august 25, 2016

Retail Expert: What Sustainability Means To The Millennial Generation

Jo Godden, Founder of RubyMoon, discusses how brands can limit their environmental impact worldwide

PSFK Labs august 25, 2016

PSFK’s Workplace Vision: How The Nurturing Of Seeds Will Come To Define The Onboarding Process

Our Future of Work vision is a service that allows companies to assemble and deliver welcome packets that are uniquely focused on the concept of growth

Arts & Culture august 26, 2016

Illustrator Interprets The Experiences Of Blind Travelers

Artist Alby Letoy creates drawings of poignant travel memories for the visually impaired

Advertising august 26, 2016

Clickbait Titles Used For The Good Of Charity

An agency devised an unlikely campaign that uses clickbait as a positive force to drive awareness to nonprofit initiatives

Advertising august 26, 2016

The Best In Eye-Catching Olympics Campaigns

PSFK rounds out the Rio Games with our picks for the best advertising moments off the field

Work august 26, 2016

Editorial Roundtable: The Arrival Of The People-First Workplace

Managed By Q, Soma, Workbar, Primary and thinkPARALLAX enumerate the reasons why companies need an employee-embracing workforce in order to exist

Arts & Culture august 26, 2016

Transforming Light Waves Into A New Art Form

An artist uses glass treated with layers of metallic coatings to create a unique installation called lightpaintings

INSIGHTS COVERAGE

Rio Olympics
Innovation Coverage From The Rio Games
READ NOW

Design august 26, 2016

This Windbreaker Lets You Explore The Outdoors While Charging Your Phone

The apparel includes solar panels that allow the wearer to stay connected through the power of renewable energy

Asia august 26, 2016

The Goal Of This Game Is To Not Get Laid Off From Your Job

A hit mobile app has you working really, really hard to not get fired as you climb the corporate ladder

Advertising august 26, 2016

Movie Critic Bot Guides Viewers Through Festival Offerings

The Toronto International Film Festival has created a Facebook Messenger chatbot to help attendants curate their schedule

No search results found.