The Animatronic Robotic Hand

A new way to pursue the "Rubber Hand Illusion"


Hello! We welcome all of you in the website of the Animatronic Hand, a project developed by a group of students following the course of Mechatronics belonging to the Bruface combined program of ULB/VUB, taken in the first year of Master of Engineering Mechanichs and Construction.

This project consists in the realization of an Animatronic Robotic Hand, which will be used as an experimental device that leads to test a new kind of 'Rubber hand Illusion'. During this experiment a person (subject) hides his/her hand by covering it or putting it into a box where he/she can't see it directly and moves it for several minutes; at the same time, the animatronic robotic hand placed next to the subject moves, reproducing exactly the person's hand movements. At the end of this operation the human brain should be made believe that the robotic hand is actually the one belonging to the human body.

The working principles

1. Capturing the movements of the subject's hand, pursued with a control glove with five flex sensors on it (one for each finger);

2. Transmitting the signals from the flex sensors to the actuation system, thanks to the development of a PCB;

3. Moving the animatronic hand, realized with five programmed hobby servomotors;

4. Developing of different programs controlling the hand's movements with certain time delays and fingers' associations;