Artificial Limbs by Susan H. Gray

By Susan H. Gray

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It was the cheetah that most inspired him. He studied the cat’s legs and how they were so flexible and fast. He wanted that same flexibility and speed in an artificial leg. Inspiration can come from many places. Van Phillips was inspired by the way cheetahs move. Ar ti f i ci al L i mb s Innovator s Who Led t he Way 29 Phillips tried different materials Life & Career Skills and different foot designs, but his prosthetic creations kept breaking. Finally, he met an expert in Van Phillips understands aerospace materials.

Would figure out what to improve on In 1983, Phillips started a new when he built the next one. In a 2004 company and hired engineers and presentation, he reminded students that materials experts. Together, they if they wanted to become inventors, there would be failures along the way. But, developed legs for skiing, swimming, he added, they could overcome failures and other sports. Their inventions with persistence. “Just keep asking, do are so good that amputee runners research, think about new and better ways have come within seconds of to do it.

Bionics. San Diego: Blackbirch Press, 2003. Zach, Kim K. Prosthetics. San Diego: Lucent Books, 2005. htm To find out more about all kinds of artificial body parts I N N O VAT I O N I N M E D I CI N E 32 amputations, 7, 9, 24 amputees, 8, 13, 14, 16, 18, 21, 22, 23, 24, 27–29 Anglesey wooden legs, 8 appearance, 18 arm prostheses, 6, 10, 13, 14, 18, 19 barber-surgeons, 6, 24–25 body-powered prostheses, 13–14 brain waves, 23 Civil War, 9, 10 “clapper legs,” 9 comfort, 7, 8, 12, 14, 16, 21, 22 computers, 20, 21, 23 cosmesis, 18 designers, 6, 7, 13, 14, 15, 16, 18, 20–21, 28–29 history, 4–10 ear prostheses, 14 electrical signals, 14 engineers, 10, 13, 14, 15, 24, 26, 29 exercise programs, 15, 23 eye prostheses, 14, 24 leg prostheses, 4, 6, 7–9, 14, 16–17, 19, 21–22, 28–29 knee prostheses, 8, 18 money, 10 muscles, 12, 13, 14 nose prostheses, 14 feeling, 16, 21, 23 foot prostheses, 5, 6, 14, 18, 29 grip, 13 hand prostheses, 6, 7, 9–10, 13, 14, 18, 19, 23 Hegesistratus (prophet), 5–6 Paré, Ambroise, 6–7, 24–25 Phillips, Van, 27–29 Potts, James, 8 rubber prostheses, 9–10, 18 Sauerbruch, Ferdinand, 11–13, 26 sensors, 14, 18, 21, 23 Sergius, Marcus, 6 sound-activated prostheses, 23 sports, 29 surgery, 6, 9, 13, 25, 28 teamwork, 11–13, 15, 21, 24, 26 teeth, 14, 21 therapists, 13, 14–15, 18, 23, 24, 26 titanium, 21, 22 users.

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