London: A team of biomedical engineers at Newcastle University, UK have developed a hand that can see and also grasp objects automatically.
This hand is responding ten times more quicker than the current prosthetics and also offers a new hope to amputees.
The bionic hand is fitted with a 99p camera camera which instantaneously takes a picture of the object in front of it, assesses its shape and size and triggers a series of movements in the hand ten times faster than any other limb currently available.
Kianoush Nazarpour, senior lecturer at Newcastle University said, "Using computer vision, we have developed a bionic hand which can respond automatically -- in fact, just like a real hand, the user can reach out and pick up a cup or a biscuit with nothing more than a quick glance in the right direction."
In addition, the hand allows the wearer to reach for objects automatically, without thinking -- just like a real hand.
It bypasses the usual processes which require the user to see the object, physically stimulate the muscles in the arm and trigger a movement in the prosthetic limb, the researchers said.
The study was published in the Journal of Neural Engineering.
Responsiveness has been one of the main barriers to artificial limbs. For many amputees the reference point is their healthy arm or leg so prosthetics seem slow and cumbersome in comparison.
Nazarpour said, "Now, for the first time in a century, we have developed an 'intuitive' hand that can react without thinking."
(With IANS inputs)