Institute for IDEAS

Institute for Immersive Designs, Experiences, Applications, and Stories


A wearable sensor to control a robotic prosethetic arm.


Flex is a low cost, lightweight, energy-efficient spatial input armband consisting of four flex resistance sensors. The device provides a continuous, 4-dimensional signal of forearm muscles flex. We train a long short-term memory network (LSTM) to enable real-time recognition of motion gestures as read by the sensor.

In this collaboration between Dr. Pietroszek of the Institute for IDEAS and Dr. Eckhardt of California Polytechnic State University, we plan to use this device to build a low cost robotic prosthetic arm that will allow people with amputated hands to interact in immersive systems.


  • Christian Eckhardt, John Sullivan, and Krzysztof Pietroszek. 2017. Flex: hand gesture recognition using muscle flexing sensors. In Proceedings of the 5th Symposium on Spatial User Interaction (SUI ’17). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 164-164. DOI: