Hackaday Prize Entry: UAProsthetics, A Powered Hand

One of the great successes of desktop 3D printers is custom prosthetics and orthotics. For a fraction of the price of a prosthetic arm, you can buy a machine capable of producing hundreds of completely customizable prosthetics. [Taran Ravindran]’s project in the running for the 2017 Hackaday Prize follows the long tradition of building customized prosthetics. His prosthetic hand designed to be simpler and cheaper than conventional artificial limbs while still giving us some innovation in how this hand will move.

The digits on [Taran]’s hand are controlled by linear servos pulling on a series of Bowden cables. One servo actuates the index finger, with a double differential to close the three less important figures — the middle, ring, and pinky fingers don’t need the articulation of the forefinger and thumb. Those three are actuated together, saving cost and complexity — they basically operate to support the index and thumb rather than being controllable independently. The thumb has 2 DOF by itself to give it the maximum amount of utility.

Another area of importance [Taran]’s focusing on is the matter of ease of use. If the prosthesis is too complicated, difficult, or unpleasant to use, it won’t get used regardless of its awesome features. Knowing this, he focused on making the hand as simplified as possible. Right now, the project has been modeled in CAD, and [Taran] is just waiting for the SLS parts to arrive before assembling the whole thing. It’s a great project, and a great entry for this year’s Hackaday Prize.

6 thoughts on “Hackaday Prize Entry: UAProsthetics, A Powered Hand

    1. I guess it’s his version. Anything not novel you notice?

      How do they control the fingers, via EMG signals if not EEG signals?

      Or do you use pressure sensors when grasping at the finger tips and palm or some sort of logical process to grip?

  1. Yes, awesome! The ability to 3D print required devices is an excellent utility. Next we need to see more raw materials used to print more intermediate and finished products. Especially, bio-materials and really bio-equivalent autograft, syngraft or integratable allograft materials. Complete with the DIY extraction/biopsy culture kit.

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