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An E-Glove Used To Help Scuba Divers Communicate

Waterproof E-Gloves Will Serve a Great Purpose For Scuba Divers.

Scuba divers are required to communicate with their partners upon arrival of danger or confusion. Hand gestures are used to relay messages such as, “Shark!” and “I’m okay.” However, these movements are hard to perceive. Researchers at ACS Nano (American Chemical Society) have developed a waterproof and wireless e-glove that deciphers hand signals onto a laptop. This e-glove might improve communication underwater between scuba divers and boat crew above.

E-gloves have already been in development, the glove fitted with electronic sensors have helped patients with strokes and allow others to interact with virtual reality. What makes ACS Nano’s e-glove different is it will be able to survive underwater while still maintaining the comfortable and flexible feeling.

Researcher began with creating waterproof sensors that rely on flexible microscopic pillars. They then put these micropillars on a thin film of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS). Upon layering the PDSM with silver, the researchers attached the two with the micropillars facing each other to create a waterproof sensor.

To further advance the development of the e-glove, a volunteer held up 16 different hand gestures. Each gesture created an electric signal which was then recorded. Using a machine learning technique they made a computer program that accurately translates hand gestures into words. Upon testing, the computer program translated messages with 99.8% accuracy.

E-gloves are incredibly useful during underwater exploration, especially in cloudy and dark waters. These e-gloves will serve as an important tool to communicate with those above surface and partners underwater.


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