Almerina Mascarello is an Italian woman who is the first person in the world that is using a powered prosthetic hand with a sense of touch for every day tasks. Overall, the technology is a few years old, but many of the components, including power and processing, had to be miniaturized before it was practical enough to take home. The team of engineers that worked on the system, including from Italy, Switzerland, and Germany, have now done that and are trialing the technology with Almerina’s enthusiastic help.
Almerina has electrodes implanted in her upper arm that stimulate nerves going up to the brain. She claims to really have a natural sense of whether she’s grasping something hard or soft, and what the general shape of the object is.