Robotic Smart Hand has Feelings

Nasa Tests New Moon Rover

AIDA Is Your Dashboard Back Seat Driving Robot

PETMAN - BigDog gets a Big Brother

Bacteria Are Models Of Efficiency

Assistive robot adapts to people, new places
January 30, 2009 04:36 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
In the futuristic cartoon series "The Jetsons," a robotic maid named Rosie whizzed around the Jetsons' home doing household chores--cleaning, cooking dinner and washing dishes. Such a vision of robotic housekeeping is likely decades away from becoming reality. But at MIT, researchers are working on a very early version of such intelligent, robotic helpers--a humanoid called Domo who grasp objects and place them on shelves or counters.

Medical robotics expert explores the human-machine interface
January 29, 2009 05:33 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
Jacob Rosen is developing a wearable robotic "exoskeleton" that could enable a person to lift heavy objects with little effort. It's a bit like the robotic armor that has long been a staple of futuristic battle scenes in science fiction books and movies. But what excites Rosen is the device's potential to help people disabled by stroke or degenerative diseases.

Bionic hand gives student new lease on life
January 21, 2009 04:35 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
A student who lost his left hand in a car accident has been fitted with the world's most advanced prosthetic limb. Evan Reynolds has been given a new lease of life by the fully functional artificial replacement. The sports biology student at University of the West of England (UWE), in Bristol, was the second person in Britain to be fitted with the advanced i-LIMB hand.

Busted Spine-Discs? Researchers Are Growing New Ones, Bioengineering Intervertebral Discs
January 18, 2009 04:19 PM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
Each year, 40 to 60 percent of American adults suffer from chronic back pain. For patients diagnosed with severe degenerative disc disease, neurosurgeons must perform surgery called discectomy — removing the IVD — followed by a fusion of the vertebrate bones to stabilize the spine. Even after all that effort, the patient's back will likely not feel the same as before their injury.

Scientists invent robot suit to help you Weed the Garden
January 14, 2009 01:45 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
With gardening becoming increasingly popular thanks to the credit crunch any help with the digging and weeding is to be welcomed. To that effect Japanese scientists have come up with a robot suit designed to help with tilling the soil. The only problem is it might give whoever's trying to put it on a bad back never mind what the neighbors will say.

Understanding Brain Tumor Growth Through Applying Weather Forecasting Technology
December 08, 2008 03:10 PM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
Researchers and students from St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center and Arizona State University's Math Department are applying weather forecast technology to model and track the growth patterns of brain tumors. The technology allows researchers to study various growth patterns of brain tumors and apply treatment parameters to determine the best option for patients. It will forecast how a patient's tumor may grow with different treatment scenarios, help physicians make a much more informed prognosis and be used as a patient consulting tool.

New Prosthetic Hand Has Grip Function Almost Like A Natural Hand
December 06, 2008 12:10 PM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
It can hold a credit card, use a keyboard with the index finger, and lift a bag weighing up to 20 kg – the world’s first commercially available prosthetic hand that can move each finger separately and has an astounding range of grip configurations. For the first time worldwide a patient at the Orthopedic University Hospital in Heidelberg has tested both the “i-LIMB” hand in comparison with another innovative prosthesis, the so called ”Fluidhand”. Eighteen-year-old Sören Wolf, who was born with only one hand, is enthusiastic about its capabilities.

Knee Brace Generates Electricity From Walking
December 05, 2008 08:59 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
A new energy-capturing knee brace can generate enough electricity from walking to operate a portable GPS locator, a cell phone, a motorized prosthetic joint or an implanted neurotransmitter, research involving the University of Michigan shows. The wearable mechanism works much like regenerative braking charges a battery in some hybrid vehicles, said Arthur Kuo, an associate professor of mechanical engineering at U-M and an author of the paper.

Scientists Create Prosthesis Of The Future
December 05, 2008 08:53 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
Researchers at Arizona State University's Polytechnic campus and the Military Amputee Research Program at Walter Reed Army Medical Center are teaming up to create the next generation of powered prosthetic devices based on lightweight energy storing springs. The device, nicknamed SPARKy, short for Spring Ankle with Regenerative Kinetics, will be a first-of-its-kind smart, active and energy-storing transtibial (below-the-knee) prosthesis.

Brain Surgery Helps a Mute Man Speak
December 05, 2008 08:41 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
A surgical procedure performed by a team from Boston University, Massachusetts led by Professor Frank Guenther, has enabled a mute man to speak again. An electrode implanted in the patient’s brain made it possible for the patient to produce vowels by thinking them, using a speech synthesizer. In the future, this breakthrough may help patients with similar injuries produce entire sentences, using signals from their brains.

Postmortem imaging of myocardial infarction in correlation to autopsy.
November 29, 2008 10:36 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
Clinical autopsy numbers have been decreasing as a recent trend over the past several years. The declining acceptance of autopsies stems from the complication of getting consent from the next of kin. This results in low autopsy numbers and reduces reliable postmortem information that is crucial for quality control within the medical care system. Less and less valuable information for medical education and national mortality statistics affects not only the health care system in general, but also the planning and focusing of further research projects in health care.

Lasers help patients breathe easier and reduce spinal pain
November 29, 2008 09:52 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
Beginning with an FSTM grant, Emil Sobol and colleagues from the Institute of Lasers & Information Technologies (Moscow) joined Craig Fryar of Torquin Therapeutics (Austin, TX) to develop new equipment for non-invasive laser correction of deviated septa. The project created a feedback control system for the technology, known as laser septochondrocorrection, and included a technical and market assessment of the cartilage laser reshaping technology.

Brain Reorganizes to Adjust for Loss of Vision
November 22, 2008 01:40 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
A new study from Georgia Tech shows that when patients with macular degeneration focus on using another part of their retina to compensate for their loss of central vision, their brain seems to compensate by reorganizing its neural connections. Age–related macular degeneration is the leading cause of blindness in the elderly. The study appears in the December edition of the journal Restorative Neurology and Neuroscience.

Pitt team to build on brain-controlled arm
November 21, 2008 04:21 PM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
University of Pittsburgh neurobiologist Andrew Schwartz dazzled the scientific world last year when he demonstrated that a monkey could feed itself chunks of zucchini using a robotic arm powered by the animal's own brain signals.

But with its simple, claw-like gripper and limited range of motion, the robotic arm used in Schwartz's experiments was a crude facsimile of a device which someday could help amputees or severely paralyzed patients.

MIT Wheelchair/Bed Aims to Boost Independence
November 16, 2008 01:10 AM EST - submitted by Daniel Shope
MIT researchers have developed a wheelchair with unique responsiveness to human muscle pressure, so tasks that previously required the help of another person-in most cases, a nursing home or hospital aide-can now be accomplished unassisted.

The wheelchair, combined with a horseshoe-shaped bed, forms a system known as RHOMBUS (Reconfigurable Holonomic Omnidirectional Mobile Bed with Unified Seating). The powered wheelchair can be docked in the horseshoe portion of the system and reconfigured to a flat, stationary position forming a twin-size bed. The wheelchair's speed and direction are controlled by operating a joystick or by giving commands to the onboard computer.

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