Australian and Bangladeshi scientists have jointly developed an artificial skin that can feel pain. It is hoped that in the future it will be used in the manufacture of artificial limbs that will be able to feel pain in addition to heat, cold and pressure.
Ata-ur-Rehman, a PhD student at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, and his colleagues have created this skin by mimicking the transfer of pain sensation from skin to brain.
Under normal circumstances, our skin feels heat, cold, and pressure as normal, but as soon as the condition is severe, there is a special excitement in the nerves of our skin, the signals of which reach our brain and cause pain.
For example, if our hand hits a sharp hot rod, the strong signals generated in the nerves reach our brain like a sharp burst, in response to which our brain takes immediate action and we withdraw our hand. As a result of this strategy, our body is protected from any major damage or tries its best to stay safe.
This artificial fur works on exactly the same principle. It has been constantly measuring changes in temperature and pressure, and as soon as anyone of them is more or less than a certain threshold, it reports it to the central system, calling it a “pain.”
It is expected that in the future, in addition to pain-sensing prostheses, it will be used in humanoid robots that will be able to hear, see, smell and touch, as well as feel “pain”.