Characteristics and Material Properties of a 3D-Printed Prosthetic Hand for Use in Developing Countries
Daniel Johnson, Corinne Dally, Moriah Canon, Sarah Ritter, and Khanjan Mehta
IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference
Johnson, D., Dally, C., Canon, M., Ritter, S., Mehta, K., “Characteristics and Material Properties of a 3D-Printed Prosthetic Hand for Use in Developing Countries,” IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference, Seattle, WA, Oct 2015
Arising out of civil conflict, disease, birth defects, and traumatic accidents, many people in developing countries lack hands or fingers. Prosthetic hands can help give these people a sense of agency and increased ability to perform everyday tasks. Unfortunately, many prostheses are prohibitively expensive and often require frequent maintenance and repair. Therefore, they are financially and geographically inaccessible to most people living in developing countries. A 3D printed, open-source hand is one possible solution owing to its low cost and potential for customization. However, the hand must be appropriate for the environmental conditions and lifestyles found in developing countries. To characterize the functionality of the 3D printed hand, a series of daily task and object tests were carried out. While the prosthesis was able to successfully complete a number of tasks, it had difficulty with those that required intricate movements and with heavy objects.