Sask. Polytechnic applied research projects include edible cutlery, robotic hand

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Sask. Polytechnic applied research projects include edible cutlery, robotic hand
Sask. Polytech students took their projects to a showcase on Friday. Easton Hamm reports they showed off edible cutlery, a robotic hand, and solutions for mining industries. – May 5, 2023

Students at Saskatchewan Polytechnic gathered at Innovation Place on Friday to showcase their applied research projects.

“A number of these students get a scholarship to work on applied research projects with a community or an industry partner and then they do a project that’s delivering a solution, developing whatever the partner’s looking for,” said Susan Blum, associate vice-president of applied research at Saskatchewan Polytechnic.

These projects are more than just a school assignment, she said.

“It’s all real-world solutions and any project that you look at, it all relates to that.”

A total of 80 students and 72 applied research projects made it the school’s largest showcase ever.

One group created edible cutlery which is aimed at Saskatoon’s hospitality sector.

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“It’s eco-friendly, it’s a sustainable product, and it’s really safe for a customer’s health,” said student Than Luong.

“There are several flavors that can be added to the cutlery, and you can eat them after you have your meal, it’s very fun and interesting,” Luong added. “It tastes good.

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I think so.”

Luong mentioned how the world is looking to move away from single-use plastics, and said edible cutlery is a step in the right direction.

“We need to soon find an alternative to replace the plastic cutlery, and this would be a perfect solution to the plastic waste.”

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Another project on display was a robotic hand, controlled by a glove.

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“This research project is the helping hand, it’s designed as a stepping-stone project to move into more advanced robotic prosthetics or remote surgery applications,” said creator Cory Hilkewich.

“Everything is 3D printed, it measures the flex and extension of the fingers, and also the rotation of the wrist.”

All motions are tracked by a glove worn by the user, and Hilkewich said he hopes in the future he can expand on his creation.

“I’d like it to be able to do individual joint motion, as well as flex and extension of the wrist, and maybe even full arm movement,” he added.

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