UT Dallas HBS Lab (Summer 2018)

As part of the NanoExplorers program, I participated in research in the Human Biomechanical Systems lab. The focus of my work was with Twisted and Coiled Polymer (TCP) artificial muscles. These artificial muscles are created from conductive sewing thread through a specific twisting procedure. When heated with electric current, they can produce impressive strain (~15%). Over the course of a summer, my task was to produce additional TCP muscles and integrate them into an existing 3D printed hand. Using experiments with one finger, I was able to identify the length of TCP muscle needed to actuate the finger and grip objects. I then incorporated the muscles using a novel pulley design, and created a spring back mechanism for each finger using elastic bands and ringlets. I also began motion tracking tests on the completed hand. 

TCP Muscle Manufacturing 

TCP Muscle Close Up 

TCP Muscle Training 

TCP Muscle Testing 

Fully Assembled TCP Arm Prototype 

Motion Tracking Hand Movement Characterization