Bionic Hand

Contributed by National Museums Scotland

The i-LIMB hand, made by Touch Bionics of Livingston, was in 2007 the world's first commercially available bionic hand to have five individually powered fingers. The motion of the fingers is controlled through sensors which pick up tiny electric signals from nearby muscles. This hand can either be covered in a cosmetic glove which mimics the look of human skin, or one which shows off the engineering.

It is a successful result of pioneering research in prosthetics which has been undertaken in Edinburgh since 1963, initially seeking to support children affected by Thalidomide, but later investigating more natural grip patterns and a modular construction of hands for patients with different needs. Both these aspects of research are present in the i-LIMB hand.

Touch Bionics were awarded one of the Queen's Awards for Enterprise in 2010.

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