BIOROBOTICS

Myki Project

MYKI is a research project funded by the European Research Council awarded to Christian Cipriani through the ERC Starting Grant 2015 funding scheme. Notably, this was the first ERC grant awarded to Scuola Sant'Anna as the Host Institution.
In line with the mission of the Artificial Hands Area (AHA) the project aims to develop and clinically evaluate a dexterous hand prosthesis with tactile sensors that is naturally controlled and perceived by the amputee. In MYKI, this goal will be targeted by overcoming the conventional approaches based on recording electrical signals from the peripheral nervous system (nerves or skeletal muscles). Indeed we will develop a radically new human-machine interface based on magnetic field principles, both able to decode voluntary motor commands and to convey sensory feedback to the amputee.
The core of this system is a multitude of magnets implanted in independent muscles and external magnetic readers/drivers able to (i) continuously localize the movements of the magnets and, at specific times, (ii) induce subtle movements in specific magnets. In fact, as a magnet is implanted it will travel with the muscle it is located in, and its localization will provide a direct measure of the contraction/elongation of that muscle, which is voluntarily controlled by the central nervous system. This is a new approach proposed and investigated for the first time within MYKI. The new human-machine interface will be assessed by one selected amputee, which will receive a temporary implant in Italy. The AHA is thus looking for a local clinical partner to play a role in this exciting project! 
Details and the current status of the project are available on the MYKI website.

 

FUNDER:  EUROPEAN RESEARCH COUNCIL
GRANT NO.:  679820
PERIOD:  2016-2020 (60 MONTHS)
FUNDING:  1.5 M€
COORDINATOR:  CHRISTIAN CIPRIANI


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