A skin crafted from two layers of electrodes around an ion-infused sponge is better at sensing than human skin because it can detect nearby objects and what they are made of
An artificial skin is even better than human skin at sensing objects, because it can detect and identify items that it hasn’t touched yet.
“Human skin has to touch something to tell it what is there,” says Yifan Wang at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. “Human skin can only tell the softness or hardness of an object. We wanted our artificial skin to have more functions.”
Even without touching an object, Wang and his colleagues’ artificial skin can sense if it is close by and can also discern some clues about the type of material it is made of. “We can tell whether it’s a piece of metal, plastic… or some biological material,” he says.
Read more: Scientists covered a robot finger in living human skin