By Vamien McKalin | Apr 29, 2013 10:41 AM EDT
Technology is indeed quite awesome, and it is about to even get even more so. Scientists at Georgia Tech are on the verge of advancing robotics by creating a piezotronic transistor mesh that could potentially give robots real feelings.
The robotic skin is embedded with nanowire transistors, which are thousands of tiny components that spread across the surface of the skin and give off electricity whenever they are brushed or touched. Consider them as thousands of tiny robotic hairs. Yes, in a way, robots of the future will have hairy bodies.
Previous technologies have taught robots how to feel, but this new tech has stepped it up a notch by actually making robots feel. The creator of this badass tech is Zhong Lin Wang.
"In the new research, Wang's group demonstrates nanoelectronics that offer at least a 15-fold enhancement in sensor density and spatial resolution compared to the previous approaches. Further, the electronic properties of the nanowires allowed the researchers to demonstrate through high-resolution imaging an improvement in sensitivity of two to three orders of magnitude. The density, resolution, and sensitivity of the sensors, says Wang, is comparable to that of the skin of a human finger," according to Technology Review.
If successful, expect to see this new tech implemented in robotic prosthetics for folks who have lost limbs.
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