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Sense of touch improved performance of a robotic arm

Brain implants enabled sensory and motor feedback to robotic arm, resembling human abilities


Key points from article :

Providing direct sensory feedback into the brain enhanced an impaired patient’s control of a robotic arm.

Latest brain-computer interface includes brain implants in the somatosensory cortex, to receive sensory feedback while operating a robotic arm.

The system also includes implants in the motor cortex, which allow the user to control the arm.

This could make brain-computer interface systems easier and more intuitive to use, and therefore practical.

Tasks were completed in almost half the time when sensory feedback was activated.

“Sensory feedback from limbs and hands is hugely important for doing normal things in our daily lives,” - Jennifer Collinger, study coauthor.

Developing advanced sensory feedback systems could significantly enhance brain-computer interface user performance.

“When even limited and imperfect sensation is restored, the person’s performance improved in a pretty significant way,” - Robert Gaunt, study co-author.

Research by the University of Pittsburgh published in Science.

Mentioned in this article:

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Robert Gaunt

Assistant Professor at University of Pittsburgh.


Peer-reviewed academic online journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)

University of Pittsburgh

Public state-related research university

Topics mentioned on this page:
Brain Interface, Prostheses