Prosthetic limbs are making their way from science fiction to reality faster than people realize through advanced technology of the modern era, one of the most advanced models is the I-limb developed and produced by Touch Bionics.Original prosthetic hands could only perform open and closing motions, the newly developed I-limb quantum is the latest hand component that can perform a variety of complex grips and gestures.
The lateral grip that is used for turning and inserting objects such as discs and credit cards:
The index point that can be used for typing on key boards and activation of small buttons such as elevator controls and indicated certain points:
Standard precision pinch is designed to pick up and handle small items such as coins:
The control methods enable and automatic response to the users requirements as many different hand gestures during the daily activities and utilize more grips this has pushed developers to make the i-limb imitate human hand movements almost exactly. The default features on the I-limb can only perform a limited number of gestures due to their current capability of measuring electrical muscle signals of the users residual arm.
The mobile phone app called my I-Limb can allow the user to select and update the functionality of the hand with the options of over 30 different grip patterns this provides flexibility and versatility if the need arises to customize the hand with a new gesture in order to improve usage.
For advanced users muscle triggers are activated by electrode sensors in the upper frame of the bionic arm that is attached to residual limb which detect electrical signals that instruct the hand to change its grip and gesture in more simpler movements.
Grip chips are blue tooth devices that can be placed near objects such as laptops or in house hold areas such as the kitchen. The grip chips make the hand automatically alternate hand gesture to the specific grip for the area without the user having to do manually.
An example of this is when the user comes near a laptop with the grip chip in place the hand will change to an appropriate gesture this will be the index point gesture allowing the user to begin typing.
“One of the things I can do now with my i-limb™ quantum that I couldn’t do well before is shake someone’s hand. It sounds so simple but this something that’s important to me in as it was awkward for me before and with the new gesture control feature I can effortlessly move to activate the handshake grip.” – Lizbeth Uzcatequi, i-limb™ quantum wearer
“The i-limb™ quantum is the next best thing to real hands and as a bilateral amputee having the ability to do what I want to do independently is truly remarkable. After trying the hands for the first time, I immediately noticed how much faster the hands are and they are also even stronger than before.” – Jason Koger, i-limb™ quantum wearer