Heading to space? Then you’ll want one of these, the Robo-Glove.
It’s effectively the same thing as those robo suits we’ve seen developed for the military. However, this glove is light weight – no more than 2lbs – and is powered using an off the shelf battery, at least for now. The design and tech found inside the Roboglove is actually derived from the R2 robot’s hand which was launched, and remains at the International Space Station. According to NASA and GM, who jointly worked on the project, they’ve achieved an “unprecedented level of hand dexterity on R2 by using leading-edge sensors, actuators and tendons comparable to the nerves, muscles and tendons in a human hand.”
The impetus for the glove? Head into space, and you’ll need to use a fair amount of force to compensate from the loss in gravitation pull to hold an object or tool. That said, repeat an action here on Earth again and again, and you’ll probably suffer a strain or injury from repetitive motion syndrome. GM aims to eliminate those injuries in their plants.
Built into the glove are a set of sensors that tell the glove when its wearer is gripping an object and tighten the would be tendons. Release and the sensors inverse the action. Shaking hands with someone is a non issue since the glove is only designed to assist with movements – in other words it won’t crush bones.
NASA and GM are aiming to complete a third prototype of the glove, but don’t expect to see it on Walmart shelves any time soon.