How Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Iconic ‘The Terminator’ Inspired an Actual Scientific Invention

Published 09/11/2023, 6:05 AM EDT

via Imago

In an era where the entire industry is grappling with a double strike due to the looming impact of AI encroaching on human jobs, Arnold Schwarzenegger was a pioneer who foresaw this transformation long ago. James Cameron’s Terminator franchise was ahead of its time, delving into themes of robots, artificial intelligence, and more. It is no wonder that it has served as a foundational source of inspiration for countless scientists and innovators. And one even reached closer to that.

In the year 2020, scientists achieved a remarkable feat when they developed a cyborg-inspired synthetic skin that had the astounding ability to self-heal. Fast forward to today, and Terminator continues to be an unexpected muse for groundbreaking scientific innovations.

Arnold Schwarzenegger and his Terminator continue to inspire inventions

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In a remarkable feat, researchers Antoni Gondia and Andrew Adamatzky have turned a page from science fiction into reality by crafting a “living skin” for robots using fungus. Their inspiration came from a pivotal moment in The Terminator, where a robot receives living skin. This external fungal addition not only gathers data but also possesses impressive self-healing abilities. As per New Scientist, their experiment resulted in the robot growing its own fungal skin within just five days.

The implications of this fungal skin were vast, offering touch sensitivity and self-healing capabilities. It was not only a scientific breakthrough but also a potential game-changer in fields like sensory technology and building design. Picture buildings with fungal designs, like something out of a sci-fi story. Researchers want these living skins to regulate building temperatures and bring about practical innovations in the future.

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The Terminator has once again proven to be a wellspring of inspiration for scientists, just as it did in the past when it contributed to the development of cutting-edge synthetic skin.

Terminator: A timeless muse for cutting-edge science

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Scientists once created a remarkable synthetic skin, reminiscent of the self-repairing abilities seen in The Terminator, the role which Schwarzenegger almost rejected. The electronic skin, known as e-skin, mirrored human skin’s strength, stretchiness, and sensitivity. Its potential was vast, from healthcare applications to engineering marvels. Previous attempts at crafting electronic skin had fallen short, but this prototype changed the game.

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It sensed objects from a distance, responded swiftly, and could self-repair over 5,000 times, as per Futurism. The breakthrough lay in combining a hydrogel strengthened with silica nanoparticles with a 2D titanium carbide MXene sensor using highly conductive nanowires. The result was an e-skin that not only detected and responded to stimuli, but also withstood repeated deformations while recovering rapidly.

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What do you think about this invention? Let us know in the comments below.

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Riva Khan

625 articles

Riva Khan is an entertainment reporter at NetflixJunkie. Given her love for the language and writing, she has honed her narrative skills from a young age. She loves her latest tea in Hollywood and keeps an eye on the news.

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