Robots are becoming more human each day. Researchers have created a new electronic skin that feels pain. Before, scientists have developed an electronic skin that reacts to touch.
Electronic Skin and Pain
The website SciTechDaily reports that a team from the RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, has created the new skin. From the research, the team has made a skin that mimics a human’s ability to feel pain.
Their skin shows a near-instant response to pressure and temperature. Like human skin, the electronic skin sends and receives pain signals at incredible speeds. The lead researcher, Professor Madhu Bhaskaran, said that their skin “reacts instantly” when pressure and temperature break the pain threshold.
How Does Electronic Skin Work?
Engadget reports that the new skin is a wearable prototype. For components, the team made the skin from “stretchable, extremely thin electronics.” The skin also has pressure sensors, coatings that react to temperature, and memory cells.
Researcher Md Ataur Rahman said that their skin could feel the difference between a light poke and a painful jab. In their design, the team copied the “neurons, neural pathways, and receptors” of the human body. These components help the body sense and react to various stimuli.
What’s the Use of Electronic Skin?
The RMIT researchers say that their skin is a step forward to developing intelligent robots and smart prosthetics.
Robots equipped with this skin can react right away to any danger. The robots could also protect people just as quickly. If you see a robot that can feel pain just like you, you won’t be scared of it that much, too.
Electronic skin can also work for non-invasive skin grafts, but only when conventional methods don’t work.