Proto Labs helps in developing robotic hands

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Photo by Proto Labs

The Telford, UK-based rapid prototyping firm Proto Labs has worked with the Shadow Robot Co. on the creation of a revolutionary robotic hand, which has now been launched as the Shadow Dexterous Hand.

Proto Labs worked with The Shadow Robot Co. during the development of the hand by moulding the plastic parts for its fingers. 

In addition to injection moulding the fingers, the company also CNC machined aluminium parts for the ‘pressure sensor tactiles’, which make the fingertips highly sensitive.

The Shadow Dexterous Hand takes a new approach to robotic manipulation, closely mimicking the dexterity of the human hand.

The hand has 20 actuated degrees of freedom, force sensors, and ultra-sensitive touch sensors and can perform many tasks previously not possible by robots.

The hand can be used as a tele-operation tool or mounted on a range of robot arms as part of a robot system.

Applications include product testing and manufacturing, in sectors ranging from pharmaceuticals to farming.


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