Student Designs Prosthetic Tentacle Arm!

For a recent project, assigned to Kaylene Kau by her Professor, she was instructed to “push the boundaries of current upper-limb prosthetic design.” And from looking at the result of her hard work, it seems that’s exactly what she did. Instead of showing off a human looking prosthetic, Kaylene took a completely different route. In fact, the prosthetic arm isn’t an arm at all…. It’s a tentacle!

According to Kaylene, “Through extensive research I found that the prosthetic functioned as an assistant to the dominant functioning hand. The prosthetic needed to be both flexible and adjustable in order to accommodate a variety of different grips.”

Inside the almost creepy, white prosthetic is a small motor that controls cables running down the length of the device. The arm can curve as much or as little as the user wants it to, allowing the device to wrap itself around objects of multiple shapes. Pictures of the device, in Kaylene’s online portfolio, show the prosthetic picking up objects ranging from keys to newspapers. There’s also a simple diagram showing the layout of the motor and cables inside the prosthetic.

What do you think? Could this design be more helpful than a prosthetic modeled after a human hand? Or, is the arm’s range of motion too limited to provide the support necessary for day to day tasks? Hit the comments and let us know if Kaylene is the next prosthetic pioneer!

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