A magnetic slime capable of reshaping, fixing itself, and sneaking into our digestive systems to fix our bodies might surely sound sinister to some people. But that’s precisely what a new invention proposes. Prof Li Zhang from the Chinese University of Hong Kong was one of those contributing to the invention.
Many people are in the situation of swallowing objects by accident that will cause some severe problems to their bodies. Such an act can even prove to be fatal in some cases. That’s where the robotic slime comes into action, as it promises to be sneaky enough to pull out those unwanted objects from the human body. We must all admit that the method is indeed pretty ingenious if it will truly prove to work.
— New Scientist (@newscientist) March 31, 2022
One of the robot’s best properties is that it can be very flexible and adaptive. It can go through narrow passages, enclose objects, fix broken circuits, and it can even self-recover if it’s cut into two parts. The robot is safe to use within the human body due to the silicon cover.
Professor Zhang explains about the invention, as The Guardian quotes:
It’s very much like mixing water with [corn] starch at home,
When you touch it very quickly it behaves like a solid. When you touch it gently and slowly it behaves like a liquid.
Zhang also declared, as the same source quotes:
The ultimate goal is to deploy it like a robot,” Zhang said, adding that for the time being the slime lacked autonomy.
We still consider it as fundamental research – trying to understand its material properties.
We’re eagerly keeping an eye on the latest news on the subject to see if the invention will indeed be used in humans’ digestive systems.