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Up until the 20th century, wearing a prosthetic limb wasn't all that great. However, a biomedical engineer is here to change it for the good.

Luke Osborn, at the Johns Hopkins laboratory, is giving a sense of touch and pain back to amputees. His solution is an electronic "skin" called an e-dermis, which provides vital sensory information that could protect the prosthetic and the wearer.

The electronic skin is made of a soft material and rubber, into which the electronic sensors are embedded and it can actually reproduce the activity of nerve endings. It can be wrapped around the fingertips of existing prostheses.

Sensations are relayed through the skin via non-invasive transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, providing a range of feelings from a fine touch to "uncomfortable yet tolerable" pain.

Any form of touch-induced to the e-dermis is transmitted to the brain of the user through an electrical nerve simulator embedded on the prosthetic arm by allowing the prosthetic to detect a level of a pain, and provide a more natural feeling while also protecting itself from damage.

A video summary can be seen below.

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