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Robot with Sense of Touch Grabs Ocean Trash

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The robotic arm gripping a seashell.

Improved touch sensitivity can help both human operators and autonomous robotic vehicles quickly accomplish underwater tasks, says James Bellingham at Johns Hopkins University.

Credit: Xun Zhao

University of California, Los Angeles researchers developed an artificial skin that allows a robot to distinguish between inanimate objects and living sea creatures.

The artificial skin features neodymium magnets that convert physical touch into magnetic field changes, and sensing layers that transform magnetic field alterations into electrical signals.

The researchers trained an AI model to interpret the sensor signals during tests in which a robotic arm outfitted with the artificial skin randomly gripped different sea creatures and trash samples.

From New Scientist
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