First-Ever Tattoo Performed By A Robot on a Woman
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A tattoo is an acceptable form of body art, yet it might be a little nerve-wracking knowing the tattoo will stay permanently with you for the rest of your life. Recently, Stijn Fransen, a dutch actress received the first-ever tattoo performed by a Robot on a woman.

The body art procedure was carried out by a tattoo artist sitting far away. He was able to maneuver the robotic arm to create the tattoo. T- Mobile 5G network, Netherlands helped with the network connectivity for the entire procedure.

Robots have been used in complex surgeries over the years. Earlier a surgeon even performed a procedure remotely on a cadaver from the comfort of his home. It was time for the technology to be used by tattoo artists.

Artist Wes Thomas and Noel Drew, a robotics technologist from London made the dream come true. Drew used a 3D printer and the spare time he got due to the lockdowns, to create a robotic arm in 6 weeks. The robot arm consists of an ink needle and it is controlled over 5G network.

He has also documented the entire process in a series dubbed ‘The Impossible Tattoo’, while Thomas performed the remote tattoo on Fransen.

The robotic arm underwent a number of tests prior to the actual tattoo. The needle is equipped with sensors, this prevents it from penetrating the skin too deep and avoids accidents. Tests were carried out using vegetables instead of human skin.

According to Drew, they made small progress each day and one test after the other went on to develop the tattoo robot. During their journey, they managed to squash a number of butternuts before they were able to fine-tune the robotic arm for the art.

Finally, the robotic arm was ready to tattoo after final tests were carried out on a mannequin. Thomas inked the mannequin arms, where he fed the movements directly to the robotic arm and started creating tattoos on Fraser.

The actual tattoo on Fraser’s forearm was small, but it represented a giant step in terms of remote robotics. Using the robotic arm we can achieve greater precision than the human hand as long as the calibration is right.

The technology does need some more fine-tuning before it hits the mainstream. Though it may not take too long as we already see robots being widely used in hospitals and workplaces. We may soon get to see one at our neighborhood tattoo parlor as well.