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Pneumatic Robotic Third Arm Powered by Walking

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Walking feeds pressure to pneumatic robots that could help those with disabilities

The idea of building a robotic third arm is nothing new. We have seen plenty of attempts at that. Mechanical engineers at Rice University’s George R. Brown School of Engineering have built a handy extra limb that can grasp objects. It is powered by compressed air. As the researchers explain:

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The system requires two components: textile pumps embedded in the soles of walking shoes that harvest air pressure and pneumatic actuators that make use of that pressure where needed.

The pumps have open-cell polyurethane foam to recover their shape after every step.


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