Terminator Coming Soon Reality With This First Robot Skin?

Skin that looks like human skin, and is even more alive, is what scientists from the University of Tokyo have created. In a study published in the journal issueAnd the They present a robotic finger covered with organic skin, which has functions Waterproof and healing. Progress may seem small, but it brings us remarkably close real people ! “I think live skin is the ultimate solution to making robots look like living beings, because they are exactly the same Material that covers the body of animalsShuji Takeuchi, the study’s first author said.

Original ingredients for human skin

to get this textureThe researchers used a group of living cells made in the laboratory Based on collagen. Blend inspired by Planting Biological substances used in medicine to treat serious wounds and burns. They first immerse the robot’s finger in a mixture of fibrous Human skin and collagen to produce equivalent dermisthen covered everything with keratinocytes human skin Create a complexion.

Then everything shrunk through hardeningsurrounds the finger and forms folds similar to those of real leather. “The advantage of our method for covering 3D objects in the equivalent of the skin is the use of tissue shrinkage during culture, which allows identical coverage of 3D objects, especially those with curved and uneven surfaces.” , Write researchers.

To check the outfit andflexibility From the leather, the team had several movements to me automated fingerand has more “Assessing the barrier function of synthetic skin equivalents.” in the laboratory With electrical measurements and tests water retention “,” As the researchers write. And it all held up really well! “the finger”air Slightly “moisten” directly from the growing mediumS.Takeuchi, excited. Since the finger is powered by an electric motor, it is also interesting to hear the motor clicks in unison with a finger that looks like a real finger. »

healing properties

In addition to its aesthetic and mechanical properties, the new skin created has propertiesself healing. The researchers applied a collagen bandage after eating them ” injury ” The robotic finger: the bandage gradually dissolves in the skin and thus rebuilds it! “The wound was repaired by the activity of dermal fibroblasts after the collagen layer was applied to the wound site. These results demonstrate the applicability of robots encased in living materials to biological functions and provide a new perspective on robotic materials.”

But this is only the beginning, as the study concludes that developed skin remains weaker than normal skin, and requires that Nutrient supply : For the future, the team plans to add sensory neuronssubordinate follicles hairy nails and the The sweat glands. “We are amazed at the quality of the fabric dermatology Compatible with the surface of the robotsays Takeuchi. But this work is only the first step towards creating robots covered with live skin. »

The problem skin has withstood all the tests! © Mater and Kwai and Paragraph.

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