About Us!!!
Highlands Intermediate School Robotics Team
#09-0020

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Introduction Current State Future Our Design Bibliography


Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall;
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. 
All the King's horses 
And all the King's men
Couldn't put Humpty together again!


































 

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall;
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king's horses
And all the king's men
Couldn't put Humpty together again!



    That was back in the 1800s, but now it’s 2008.  With today’s technology, we may be able to create prostheses that can fix not only Humpty, but also many other problems that people face today.  Technology has enabled unlimited possibilities beyond imagination’s grasp.  We have flown to the moon and dove to the deepest depths of the ocean.  However, there is still a lot that needs to be done in the area of prosthetics. 
    There are more amputees today due to the war in Iraq.  Many are suffering limb loss due to the roadside bombs.  Because of this, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is funding research to design better prostheses.[9]
     Prostheses are manmade limbs which are used to replace a part of the body that has been lost or is no longer functional.  The prostheses made today are more sophisticated than those made in the past but still have room for improvement.  The goal for prosthetics is to be able to fully replicate all of the actions of a real limb like feeling, sending signals to the brain, and responding to direct brain control.[10]
     Our specific area of interest is the hand.  Progress made in this area is advanced compared to that of other prosthetic limbs.  Our idea for the future of prosthetics is a prosthetic hand exoskeleton that would eventually connect to an arm exoskeleton.  We thought of this concept because of a situation that affected a local artist, Peggy Chun (1946-2008) who sadly passed away a short while ago.  She was fully incapacitated due to Lou Gherig’s disease which is a fatal disease that attacks the motor neurons in the brain and spinal cord.  The disease over time makes the neurons disappear, making the muscles smaller and then paralyzing the body.  She continued to create many works of art even while she was paralyzed by painting with her mouth, and then her eyes with the aid of a computer.  If there had been a prosthetic arm exoskeleton that could slip over her paralyzed arm, it would have been easier for her to continue her art work.  That is why we are focusing on an exoskeleton, narrowing our area of interest down to the hand and wrist, since that is the most challenging section of a future prosthetic arm exoskeleton.