Hard plastic and soft rubber are mixed to create connections. The 3D printed "pianist" plays great music.

The one who plays the piano may not be an elegant pianist, but a cold mechanical hand. A few days ago, a Cambridge University research team modeled the structure of the human hand using 3D printing technology to create a "pianist" who can only play simple piano music by controlling wrist movement. The corresponding results of the study were published in the journal Science Robotics.

The design of the new manipulator fully mimics the structure of the human hand, with 3-4 joints on each finger, and mimics the degree of softness and hardness needed for different parts. It is especially worth noting that each finger does not need a separate motor to control, but the process of playing with human hands on the piano is simulated due to the “passive” reaction to soft and hard changes in various parts of the robot’s hand when it comes into contact. contact with keys. Many different game actions and functions.

Researchers are using 3D printing technology to make robotic arms, mixing hard plastic and soft rubber in varying proportions to create ligaments and joints of varying hardness, assembling them into artificial arms and then connecting them to conventional industrial robotic arms. The researchers wrote a program to control the movement of a robotic arm, simulating a wrist, to control the fingers to play music on a piano.

The researchers divided piano playing into three types of actions: tapping with one finger, jumping and sliding with the thumb, and used three pieces of music to measure the ability of the robotic arm. The first is a toccata written by the Italian composer Scarlatti. The researchers found that it was necessary to increase the strength of the index finger of the robotic hand and decrease the strength of the other fingers in order to play staccato and soft legato on the piano like humans do. The researchers then used other musical styles to test the robot's ability to play octaves. They found that playing big jumps and clear notes required improving the elasticity of the ligaments of the fingers and maintaining the strength of the fingers themselves. Experiments showed that the new robotic arm showed superior dexterity in volume control, thumb movement, and staccato and legato playing compared to many existing robotic arms.

Scientists have been creating manipulators for decades. Previous manipulators often used complex, rigid mechanical structures and bulky electrical drive systems. A Cambridge research team has challenged this traditional design concept. Hughes, the first author of the article and the University of Cambridge, stated that human intelligence is not only reflected in the brain, but also spreads throughout the body, especially in various complex body structures and human mechanics. The team's ultimate goal of creating an expressive Robot Piano is not limited to playing the right melodiesand.