Software Development

Penn students win $45k to develop low-cost robotic arm they designed

The students, three of which are pursuing graduate degrees at Penn, are the first U.S. winners of the James Dyson Award, which challenges students to solve a problem through design. The competition received more than 650 entries, a spokeswoman said.

Nick McGill, part of the team that built the Titan Arm, shows off the team's invention.

A group of Penn students won an international design competition, receiving $45,000 to further develop the low-cost robotic arm they created, according to a release. Dubbed “The Titan Arm,” it increases the wearer’s strength and can be used to help rehabilitate patients.

The students, three of which are pursuing graduate degrees at Penn, are the first U.S. winners of the James Dyson Award, which challenges students to solve a problem through design. The competition received more than 650 entries, a spokeswoman said.

dyson titan arm2

The prototype only cost $2,000 to make, while similar designs often cost close to $100,00, according to the release. The team hopes to sell the arm for less than $10,000.

As part of the first place prize, Penn also won $16,000 to spend on rapid prototyping equipment. The students hope to use 3D printing to custom fit the arms to specific customers.

The Titan Arm was designed by Elizabeth Beattie, Nick Parotta, Nick McGill and Niko Vladmirov.

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