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This Life-Like Child Robot Can ‘Feel and Express’ Pain from its Pressure-Detecting Synthetic Skin

This Life-Like Child Robot Can ‘Feel and Express’ Pain from its Pressure-Detecting Synthetic Skin

Meet Affetto, a life-like child robot that can detect changes in pressure via its synthetic skin, allowing it to ‘feel and express’ pain. A team of researchers at Osaka University in Japan have developed this eerily-realistic bot in the hopes that it will help robots understand and empathize with humans.

Equipped with a “pain nervous system” that is powered by artificial intelligence (AI), Affetto is able to feel and differentiate between a gentle touch or a solid hit. Its state-of-the-art synthetic skin allows it to react to sensations using a variety of facial expressions – from responding to touches by smiling, frowning, and grimacing.



Overall, the researchers identified 116 different facial points and now they’re zeroing in on enabling Affetto to process pain. Back in 2011, when Affetto made its debut, it was just a robotic head capable of showing facial expressions. Today, Affetto has a full bot-body that is covered by synthetic skin equipped with sensors.

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