If there is one thing that must be said about the field of robotics, it would be this – plenty of advancements have been made in this particular department over the years, so much so that we now have the likes of the Deka Arm that can gently pick up a grape without squishing it, as well as this extremely fast robotic arm that is capable of catching items thrown in its direction – while said items are in midair, of course.

Thanks to researchers over at the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland, the unique robot arm that you can see in action in the video above is smart enough to make fine adjustments within short spans of time in order to grab hold of the flying “missile” in its direction. Just how little time is involved here? I am referring to as few as five-hundredths of a second.

The arm will measure approximately 1.5 meters in length and sports a quartet of fingers, including one which functions in the same vein as that of a thumb, hence allowing it to perform functions such as plucking a ball, an empty bottle, a half-full bottle, a hammer, and a tennis racket right out of thin air. This is made possible thanks to a slew of cameras that “watch” the objects which are hurled in its direction, before it “decides” on the right movement to catch said flying object.

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