Scientists Made Self-Healing Electronic Skin For Robots

Scientists Made Self-Healing Electronic Skin For Robots

And that's now in the works.

This e-skin can heal itself when damaged, and when destroyed beyond fix, the material can be soaked in a solution that separates the silver nanoparticles, allowing it to be recycled back into a new e-skin. And if it gets damaged, the e-skin can be healed, and it can be completely recycled at the end of its useful life. It's built around a covalently bonded dynamic network polymer, known as polyimine, laced with silver nanoparticles to provide better conductivity and mechanical strength.

"What is unique here is that the chemical bonding of polyimine we use allows the e-skin to be both self-healing and fully recyclable at room temperature", said Xiao in a press statement. So, when one cuts e-skin into two parts, then adding the three compounds to the cut area enables the e-skin to heal itself and the e-skin is restored back to its original shape and functioning.

However, the electronic skin is not created to be worn by normal people.

So all in all, this takes some of the best technology found in the Terminator movies, and leaves all the world-threatening technology like liquid metal killers and Skynet.

The idea for e-skin has been around since 2011, but this is the first version that can be reused, reducing waste and lessening manufacturing costs.

Self-healing e-skin to give robots human skin sense that helps humans in knowing that they are alive.

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Perhaps e-skin's most remarkable application-or its most disconcerting, depending whom you ask-is in robotics.

The authors of the study explained that this breakthrough discovery also makes a great contribution to the robotics and human interaction with robots, as now there will be less chance of robots hurting people in the future.

"When the baby is sick, the robot can just use a finger to touch the surface", Xiao said.

To fix the e-skin after it has suffered mechanical damage, a rehealing agent consisting of three compounds in ethanol is applied with heat pressing.

Thanks to the heat and pressure capabilities, self-healing electronic skin can effortlessly wrap around curved objects, including human skin and robotic hands. The silver nanoparticles sink to the base of the arrangement.

If the electronic skin is damaged and can no longer be repaired, it can even be recycled using a special solution to liquefy it in a form that can be used to create a new piece of electronic skin.

"Given the millions of tons of electronic waste generated worldwide every year, the recyclability of our e-skin makes good economic and environmental sense".

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