- This event is a production of the Atlanta Science Tavern Meetup as part of our Young Researchers Series.
- Our Open Seating Policy will be in effect and seating will be on a first-come basis. The capacity of the room is 65.
- Parking is available at the Oxford Road and Peavine parking decks.
- If you're interested in dinner after the talk, head over to Slice & Pint in Emory Village.
Where Mind Meets Machine: A Robotic Hand that Can "Feel"
Brendan O'Flaherty, Graduate Student
Neuroscience Graduate Program
Photo credit: Patrizia Tocci
Artificial limbs haven't improved much over the past century: the prosthetic limbs given to patients after hand loss are a long way from the real thing. However, recent advances in artificial limb technology have made prosthetic limbs much more versatile, intuitive and easy to use. Most excitingly, it's become possible to connect artificial limbs directly to the brain and the nerves, allowing the brain to directly move the artificial limb in the same way it controls a real hand.
In an exciting new breakthrough, scientists took this idea even further and created a new type of mechanical hand that allows the user to "feel" objects by connecting sensors to the brain. This is the first artificial limb that provides the user sensory feedback, potentially allowing it to be used without looking or in the dark. With time, we may be able to give patients artificial limbs that work just as well as the real thing.
About our speaker
Brendan O'Flaherty is currently a graduate student in the Neuroscience Graduate Program at Emory University. He is interested in how cells in the brain form circuits that play roles in complex phenomena like emotion, behavior, and cognition.