The Shadow Hand is the closest robot hand to the human hand available. It provides 24 movements, allowing a direct mapping from a human to the robot. It has integrated sensing and position control, allowing precise control from off-board computers, or integration into your existing robot platform.
The Shadow Hand contains an integrated bank of 40 Air Muscles which make it move. The Air Muscle is a small, light, simple and 'friendly' actuator. It is soft, has no stiction, is easily controllable and exceptionally powerful. The muscles are compliant, which allows the Hand to be used around soft or fragile objects. The Shadow Hand can be fitted with touch sensing on the fingertips, offering sensitivity sufficient to detect a single small coin.
The Shadow Dexterous Hand is an advanced robot hand system that reproduces all the movements of the human hand and provides comparable force output and sensitivity. This means it can pick up or handle small to medium sized objects and perform precision tasks, so robots using it can have the versatility of humans.
The sensitivity and compliance of the Hand makes it possible for us to manipulate delicate objects such as fruit and eggs. For the same reason, the Hand is safe around human beings, since it is less strong than a person.
Being the same size as a human hand, the system is versatile and suitable for use for a variety of purposes:
Handling of delicate objects
Rehabilitation and assistive technology
Shadow's objective is to have the Shadow Dexterous Hand as part of a whole system that would help people in their daily environment. It would be a great help, not only for the disabled and the elderly but also for working parents who would rather spend time with their kids than doing the washing and ironing.
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