Scientists from Sony Corporation and the University of Chicago are working on a system of electric muscle stimulation, which will allow people to respond much faster to what is happening around them.
Robots’ reaction is much speedier than the human one. It is due not only to machines’ physical capabilities, but also their perception systems, which are much faster than our brain and nervous system. But Homo sapiens have a chance to get closer to robotic performance: to do this, our body needs to be controlled by an electrical muscle stimulation system (EMS).
Sony and the University of Chicago are currently working on such a system. The normal response rate of a healthy adult is approximately 250 Ms. However, one fifth of the time is spent on getting our muscles to move. It is this interval that EMS allows to reduce.
Researchers have warned about the innovation‘s drawbacks: if, at the last minute, a person changes his mind to act, his muscles will still contract. Thus, the difficulty lies in coordinating the user’s goals and those of the system.
EMS creation has huge value, especially, for arranging interaction between humans and such robotised systems as exoskeletons.
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