Sunday, February 17, 2013

Artificial finger tests evolutionary origin of prints

The artificial finger at Dartmouth College has a silicon pad with ridges impressed upon it

It seems intuitive that fingerprints should have something to do with grip, but showing this has not been easy.

Many experiments that have run human skin across various surfaces have found few if any friction benefits from the little lumps and bumps.

But new tests using an artificial finger may provide some fresh insight.

A Dartmouth College team took its mechanical digit into the field and ran it over natural materials like tree bark and found a big friction increase.

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