When Cathy Hutchinson controlled a robotic arm using a small sensor planted in her brain, it was a remarkable breakthrough in neurobiology and computer science. The sensor would recognize patterns or signals from her thoughts, and then send corresponding commands to the machine. Hutchinson, who had been paralyzed from the neck down for 15 years, had been collaborating with a team of over 40 scientists for 5 years to make it happen.

In this clip from Dara O Briain’s Science Club, Helen Czerski, physicist, oceanographer, and mechanical engineering Research Fellow at University College London, walks us through the incredible research.

In the archives: Leon McCarthy’s cyborg hand, Nigel Ackland’s bionic hand, and a model helicopter guided by power of thought.

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