Italian 3D printing company Youbionic, known for its bionic hand prototype that has been in development for a few years, announced its plans to release a bionic arm targeted for those with birth defects or those with accident-related missing limbs.

Youbionic's bionic hand started as a CAD model, and is now a working prototype. The hand is powered by the open-source software Arduino, which acts like the brain to send electric impulses that trigger muscle movements. This means the consumer is able open and close their palm, and move their fingers. The technology would allow patients to have and experience the movements as close to those of an authentic hand or arm as possible.

Youbionic's founder Federico Ciccarese revealed that the experiments conducted on the prototype were successful, and that the company has a goal of getting a wearable product out on the market by the end of the year.

"We validated our initial idea that material deformation is necessary in order to optimize the hand's movements. The mechanical intuition that we derived from a direct observation of muscular fibers have provided us with the necessary elements to design the entire bionic hand," he said.

While the company continues to perfect the bionic hand prototype, it has begun developing the fully 3D-printed bionic arm that follows the same concept.

Even though the fully 3D-printed arm is just in the development stage, Ciccarese said that the design and electronics components have been selected, and the bionic arm will now enter its next phase.

The bionic arms, especially if added to a person's existing arms, expand the range widely, the site notes. "Youbionic devices will turn you into an person able to perform movements in sync impossible for a traditional man," Ciccarese added.

The company will continue to work on both bionic hand and arms, with the 3D-printed hand targeted for a retail price of $1,100.

Via: 3D Printing Industry

Photo: Federico Youbionic | YouTube

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