SynTouch is a Los Angeles based company creating a sense of touch for machines. They develop robotic sensors and solutions that enable robots to turn this new sense of touch into human-like tactile awareness, perception and dexterity.
The sense of touch by the SynTouch solution is so sensitive it can tell not just pressure but texture and even the type of material being touched. These are highly sensitive systems that enable robot hands to grasp fragile objects without damaging them. Robots can now use their opposable thumbs just like humans to pick up just about anything and so so at the right amount of pressure. Need to pick up an engine block? Grasp that with all your might. Need to pick up baby chicken? No worries!
The video below captures many of the interesting developments being fielded by SynTouch
Touch is one of the most important human senses, and now we are emparting this on robots!
The lead product SynTouch is building on has been evolving since 2008, the year the BioTac tactile sensor was launched. The sensor detects force, vibration and temperature.
Solutions that can now be provided because of these sensors include prosthetics (including hands that can operate with contact detection so you can cook eggs and break them when you want). Solutions have also been fielded that can give people the power to touch things from a distance. Imagine wanting to feel the fabric of a piece of clothing before you bought it online.
From there just let your imagination run wild. What if robotic surgeries had the surgeons using devices enabled with robotic touch, so the sensors were helping the doctors perform their robot empowered work with new levels of precision. Or imagine if astronauts could now feel through their thick spacesuit gloves? Or imagine if robots could run into a hazardous area, like a nuclear reactor with a dangerous leak, and give human operators a refined sense of touch to be able to shut things down or take other action from afar.
For more insights see: SynTouch
And to track more on robots and robotics see the Things Cyber Robot Page.