The SoftHand Pro: Translation from Robotic Hand to Prosthetic Prototype

Conference paper
Part of the Biosystems & Biorobotics book series (BIOSYSROB, volume 15)


This work presents the translation from a humanoid robotic hand to a prosthetic prototype and its first evaluation in a set of 9 persons with amputation. The Pisa/IIT SoftHand is an underactuated hand built on the neuroscientific principle of motor synergies enabling it to perform natural, human-like movements and mold around grasped objects with minimal control input. These features motivated the development of the SoftHand Pro, a prosthetic version of the SoftHand built to interface with a prosthetic socket. The results of the preliminary testing of the SoftHand Pro showed it to be a highly functional design with an intuitive control system. Present results warrant further testing to develop the SoftHand Pro.


Prosthetic Hand Robotic Hand Typical Prosthesis Motor Synergy Residual Muscle 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Financial support was provided by the Grainger Foundation, National Institutes of Health NICHD grant R21HD081938-01, by the European Research Council under the Advanced Grant SoftHands “A Theory of Soft Synergies for a New Generation of Artificial Hands” no. ERC-291166, and by the European Union's Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme under Grant Agreement “SoftPro,” No. 688857.


  1. 1.
    E.A. Biddiss, T.T. Chau, Upper limb prosthesis use and abandonment: a survey of the last 25 years. Prosthet. Orthot. Int. 31(3), 236–257 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    A. Bicchi, M. Gabiccini, M. Santello, Modeling natural and artificial hands with synergies. Philos. Trans. R. Soc. B 366, 3153–3161 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    M.G. Catalano, G. Grioli, E. Farnioli, A. Serio, C. Piazza, A. Bicchi, Adaptive synergies for the design and control of the Pisa/IIT SoftHand. Int. J. Robot. Res. 33(5), 768–782 (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    R.H. Jebsen, N. Taylor, R.B. Trieschmann, M.J. Trotter, L.A. Howard, An objective and standardized test of hand function. Arch. Phys. Med. Rehabil. 50(6), 311–319 (1969)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Istituto Italiano di TecnologiaGenoaItaly
  2. 2.Mayo ClinicRochesterUSA
  3. 3.Arizona State UniversityTempeUSA
  4. 4.University of PisaPisaItaly

Personalised recommendations