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hacking prosthetics


In this course, the goal of this project was to co-design a socket prosthesis

for Chris who was born with one arm.

Our team developed a universal socket that enabled Chris to attach his own end effectors custom to his needs and interests. This includes recreational and physiotherapeutic activities 

like rock climbing, yoga, and biking.

[ See our team's process in working with Chris and hacking together a socket prosthesis ]

design and development

how to: socket codesign


We interviewed Chris on why other prostheses don't work for him. Then we co-designed with him by exploring off the shelf materials and comfortable clamping depths on his limb.


We built 3 representations of his limb - digital point cloud, casted rubber, and 3D printed plastic. These models helped inform various prototyping methods in building the final socket prototype.


The final socket prototype included a carbon fiber shell with soft rubber lining and terminated with mechanical clasps for an open application interface. 


The team presented at the

Open Hardware Summit in 2015 showcasing the story of our collaboration.

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