STATES CHRONICLE – Scientists have developed a robotic arm which can be controlled by human’s mind. A group of researchers at the University of Minnesota demonstrated that bionic arms operated by human’s thoughts are bound to become real. Researchers who conducted the study had as a primary purpose the development of a method prone to be efficient without imposing the risk of a complicated brain surgery.
On December 13, Bin He together with his colleagues reported that they managed to use the sensors implemented in a cap bound to interpret the brain signals of the holder, controlling the robotic arm. This incredible success boosted researchers’ confidence after conducting so many tests.
Scientists have implemented this technology to eight different subjects which needed to use their thoughts to order the arm how to move. Bin He, who directs the University’s Institute for Engineering in Medicine and its Center for Neuroengineering, argued that this represents the first time in the history of the world when people manage to operate a robotic arm using only their thoughts, without the need for a brain implant.
The subjects of the study were able to move the bionic arm by only imagining moving their arms. They managed to reach and hold objects by only thinking of a series of movements which later underwent by the robotic prosthesis. The robot was able to perform real-world tasks. That is a fantastic outcome that other scientists could only dream of achieving.
There were other clinical researches which managed obtain favorable results when using a prosthetic arm, but not without the help of a brain implant. A “brain-computer interface” was capable of controlling the robotic arm. These brain implants were placed very close to the neurons to record the signals send by them and thus perform the action designated by the thought.
Other attempts which tried to use external sensors did not work at all because the skull generated an interference for the neural signals to reach the sensors. Bin He’s innovation was based on the development of software bound to enable the sensors in the cap to filter that interference and accurately interpret the instructions send through neural signals.
Scientists claimed that they managed to differentiate the real brain signals from the background noise while also deciphering its intention.
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