"Iron Man" Suit Will Allow Paraplegic to Make First World Cup Kick

brazil 2014

The unidentified patient will walk for the first time and kick the ball thanks to an Iron Man-like robotic bodysuit controlled by signals from the brain.

Jun 10, 2014 | 03:26 PM

If you think the 2014 FIFA World Cup is all about football and puppies, think again. 

Duke University neuroscientist Miguel Nicolelis led a team of 156 scientists from around the world to create the exoskeleton, an Iron Man-like robotic bodysuit designed to enable paralysis victims to walk—and an unidentified paraplegic to make the first kick during Thursday's FIFA World Cup opening ceremony. 

"It's the first time an exoskeleton has been controlled by brain activity and offered feedback to the patients," Nicolelis told AFP. "Doing a demonstration in a stadium is something very much outside our routine in robotics. It's never been done before," he added. 

Watch the video below to learn how the exoskeleton works—including the way electronic circuits send a return signal to the user.

The 2014 FIFA World Cup will be held in Brazil from June 12 to July 13. For a full World Cup 2014 broadcast TV schedule, click here

Cover image credit: Yahoo/Reuters 

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