Detached Gestural Prehensile 

Group of 3 | Spring 2018, Royal College of Art & Imperial College

Detached Gestural Prehensile is a response to a brief to place an artifact into Imperial College’s cabinet of curiosity in the Dyson Library. As a team, we were interested in emotive robotics and the trend of anthropomorphising robots. Hands are the most communicative part of our body besides the face - we move them while we talk to aid in emphasizing our words, we can speak with them, and they can send signals and emotions. What does it mean to for a robot to express language in a way that is so innately human? We created a silicone hand embedded with LEDs which would turn different colors according to the gesture displayed by the wooden fingers. Individuals controlled whether the fingers were opened or closed with sliding potentiometers.


The creation of hand was a three step materials process going from alginate, to plaster, and finally into a silicone mold. Above is the mold for the hand.


Servo motors controlled the opening and closing of fingers in order to communicate. The motors were activated by changing values of a series of sliding potentiometers controlled by the user.

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