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Archive for the ‘cyborgs’ category

Feb 15, 2019

Carbon Nanotube Ribbons Could Give Superman a Run for His Money

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, economics, nanotechnology

stretchy nanotubesLighter than air! Stronger than steel! More flexible than rubber! No, it’s not an upcoming superhero flick: It’s the latest marvelous formulation of carbon nanotubes–at least as reported by the creators of the new super-material. Researchers working on artificial muscles say they’ve created nanotech ribbons that make our human muscles look puny by comparison. The ribbons, which are made of long, entangled 11-nanometer-thick nanotubes, can stretch to more than three times their normal width but are stiffer and stronger than steel… They can expand and contract thousands of times and withstand temperatures ranging from −190 to over 1,600 °C. What’s more, they are almost as light as air, and are transparent, conductive, and flexible [Technology Review].

The material is made from bundles of vertically aligned nanotubes that respond directly to electricity. Lengthwise, the muscle can expand and contract with tremendous speed; from side-to-side, it’s super-stiff. Its possibilities may only be limited by the imaginations of engineers. [The material’s composition] “is akin to having diamond-like behavior in one direction, and rubber-like behavior in the others” [Wired], says material scientist John Madden, who wasn’t involved in the research.

When voltage is applied to the material, the nanotubes become charged and push each other away, causing the material to expand at a rate of 37,000 percent per second, tripling its width. That’s 10 times as far and 1000 times as fast as natural muscle can move, and the material does so while generating 30 times as much force as a natural muscle [IEEE Spectrum]. The researchers put together a video to illustrate the concept, and will publish their work in Science tomorrow.

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Feb 15, 2019

A 100-Year-Old Martian In An Exoskeleton

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, health, space

We strongly believe that only digital health can bring healthcare into the 21st century and make patients the point-of-care.

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Feb 12, 2019

New Bionic Heart Charges Wirelessly Inside Patient’s Chest

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, transhumanism

Patients and doctors have been waiting for this device for decades.

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Feb 12, 2019

What.IfVideosWhat If We Became Cyborgs?

Posted by in category: cyborgs

If you could become a cyborg, what enhancements would you get?

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Feb 12, 2019

Are Cyborg Warriors a Good Idea?

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, military, neuroscience

The Pentagon is funding brain-implant research aimed at creating neurally “enhanced” soldiers.

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Feb 7, 2019

Doctors Wired a Prosthetic Hand Directly Into a Woman’s Nerves

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, robotics/AI

In a world first, doctors in Sweden say they’ve wired a prosthetic hand directly into a woman’s nerves, allowing her to move its fingers with her mind and even feel tactile sensations.

The hand is an enormous step up from existing prostheses, which often rely on electrodes placed on the outside of the skin — and it could herald a future in which robotic devices interface seamlessly with our bodies.

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Feb 6, 2019

Superhuman Skin Senses Sound Waves and Magnetic Fields

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, nanotechnology, wearables

Researchers have developed a new kind of sensor designed to let artificial skin sense pressure, vibrations, and even magnetic fields. Developed by engineers, chemists, and biologists at the University of Connecticut and University of Toronto, the technology could help burn victims and amputees “feel” again through their prosthetic skin.

“The type of artificial skin we developed can be called an electronic skin or e-skin,” Islam Mosa, a postdoctoral fellow at UConn, told Digital Trends. “It is a new group of smart wearable electronics that are flexible, stretchable, shapable, and possess unique sensing capabilities that mimic human skin.”

To create the sensor for the artificial skin, Mosa and his team wrapped a silicone tube with a copper wire and filled the tube with an iron oxide nanoparticle fluid. As the nanoparticles move around the tube, they create an electrical current, which is picked up by the copper wire. When the tube experiences pressure, the current changes.

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Feb 1, 2019

Bringing artificial limbs to patients who need them

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, military

Johnny Matheny demonstrates how a modular prosthetic limb works during DARPA Demo Day 2016 at the Pentagon, May 11, 2016. Matheny is a test subject with the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab8.

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Jan 29, 2019

Artificial skin could give superhuman perception

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, health

For a long time, biohackers have been playing with magnets by embedding then under their skin as a novelty extra-sensation. I, personally, don’t see the point, but morphological, taxonomic, and cladic freedom are at work so I celebrate their actions.


Our skin’s ability to perceive pressure, heat, cold, and vibration is a critical safety function that most people take for granted. But burn victims, those with prosthetic limbs, and others who have lost skin sensitivity for one reason or another, can’t take it for granted, and often injure themselves unintentionally.

Chemists Islam Mosa from UConn, and James Rusling from UConn and UConn Health, along with University of Toronto engineer Abdelsalam Ahmed, wanted to create a sensor that can mimic the sensing properties of skin. Such a sensor would need to be able to detect pressure, temperature, and vibration. But perhaps it could do other things too, the researchers thought.

“It would be very cool if it had abilities human skin does not; for example, the ability to detect magnetic fields, sound waves, and abnormal behaviors,” said Mosa.

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Jan 27, 2019

AI Helps Amputees Walk With a Robotic Knee

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, information science, robotics/AI

A movie montage for modern artificial intelligence might show a computer playing millions of games of chess or Go against itself to learn how to win. Now, researchers are exploring how the reinforcement learning technique that helped DeepMind’s AlphaZero conquer chess and Go could tackle an even more complex task—training a robotic knee to help amputees walk smoothly.


Computer algorithms help prosthetics wearers walk within minutes rather than requiring hours of training.

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