While humankind has made great strides in creating Terminator-like robotic appendages, we’re still a ways from an artificial arm that moves and acts precisely like a flesh-and-blood appendage.
Yet, a team of MIT technologists recently created a robot gripper that might help pave the path for one.
The Origami Robot Gripper is a robotic arm featuring a 3D printed silicone grip that contorts around an object to carry. At the machine’s heart is a gripper-to mount connector surrounded with silicone skin.
Whenever the gripper closes in on an object, a vacuum collapses the silicone around it, effectively grasping the item without crushing it—and it’s capable of doing so for objects that are up to a hundred times its own weight.
Inspired by the “magic ball” origami design, which is folded from a rectangular shape into a spherical one, the Origami Robot Gripper (they really need a shorter name for it) is meant to be a versatile hand which can conform itself to a wide variety of objects—regardless of the complexity of the shape.
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