Cyborg Robots are Useful For Medicine
Thanks to the advent of robotics and scientific research, incredible results are achieved every day thanks to the interactions between cyborg robots and human beings.
The robot is no longer maneuvered at a distance but becomes one with the man: the new generation exoskeletons are an example of how the fusion between man and machine is imagined in so many science fiction novels and films.
A Japanese group of the University of Tsukuba has developed a device called HAL, which means assisted limb of voluntary control and autonomous hybrid, or a hybrid limb with assisted autonomous control. It is produced by Cyberdyne, the university’s spin-off.
Not only does HAL seem to be the embodiment of the exoskeletons described by so much science fiction, the authors stress, but in the end, it has already surpassed it.
Cyborg Robots are Not Only for Movies
Robots that can be worn or integrated with the body and the human nervous system, already out of the labs, are not only much more advanced than “old” robots like Mazinger Z or Goldrake, but they already have some of the performance of most of the Modern fiction giants, such as the Pacific Rim Jaegers: for example, they are controlled by humans via neural interfaces.
In the case of HAL, for example, it is the neuromuscular electrical signals of the person wearing the device that makes it move. In a sense, that is, the exoskeleton is commanded by thought: the intention to perform a movement is enough to make it execute the robotic limb as if it were the natural one. In turn, the robot device retransmits a feedback signal to the brain, as normally occurs in the interaction between the nervous system and the outside world.
Cyborg Robots to Help-Medicine
Precisely because HAL‘s cybernetic mechanisms allow precise voluntary movements to be performed without straining the wearer’s muscles, exoskeletons and robots are entering the field of medicine and rehabilitation. In the experience of Japanese scholars, patients with progressive muscular diseases who cannot move more than a dozen steps on their own can make up to 2,000 with the help of HAL.
Furthermore, early clinical studies have shown that the rehabilitation performed with these systems for patients with nervous system injuries and paralysis is much more efficient than the traditional one.
For example, the research group led by Miguel Nicolelis, at Duke University, showed in the first clinical study that with a twelve-month exoskeletal training program, eight paraplegic people had improvements for years that allowed them to change the diagnosis from partial to total paralysis: an unprecedented event in this area.
Cyborg Robots can be Used in Factory and During Emergency
Experiments with the use of exoskeletons for the rehabilitation of the arm of people suffering from stroke are all over Europe but these technologies are only for research and not yet for patients.
As we have seen with food delivery robots, even exoskeletons can be considered among those futuristic technologies able to improve life: just think that the exoskeletons robots could be used to support the lumbar area and help workers in various sectors to lift weights with less health risks or could be employed in disaster scenarios, for example, to help rescuers to remove rubble.
So future developments are almost endless, all that remains is to stay up to date so as not to miss any news.
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