Princeton Researchers Create 'Bionic Ear' - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Princeton Researchers Create 'Bionic Ear'

PRINCETON, N.J. (AP) - Researchers at Princeton University have brought a new tool into the realm of cybernetics: a 3-D printer.
    
The scientists have devised a way to print an ear-shaped chunk of silicone mixed with bovine cells and infused with silver particles that form an antenna. Like any antenna, this one can pick up radio signals.
    
The 3-D ear cannot replace a human one. It was designed to test what can be done with 3-D printing technology in cybernetics, which is the field of combining biological tissue with electronics.
    
Michael McAlpine, the professor who led the research, says this is a small step, but the work could eventually lead to a sort of digital sixth sense for humans, giving our bodies the ability to connect to electronic devices.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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