MIT scientist Hugh Herr was an excellent mountain climber until he lost both his legs to frostbite after a horrific mountaineering expedition in 1982 when he was just 17.
He got his first pair of prosthetics, which he felt were stiff and painful. While in high school, he had trained in tool and die machining. So he decided to put those skills to work. He set up a workshop in the garage and build his own prosthetic limbs for rock and ice climbing. Soon, he was able to climb steep and difficult routes. Along the way, he developed an interest in making artificial limbs better.
So although he never planned to go to college, he chose to give it a try and use technology to make disability disappear. He earned a bachelor’s degree in physics at Millersville University in Pennsylvania at age 25 and completed a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from MIT in 1993.
The days of stiff, painful, and ugly prosthetic limbs are over!
Hugh Herr is now the head of the biomechatronics group at MIT’s Media Lab. He is building the next generation of bionic limbs and robotic prosthetics to totally revolutionize the way amputees live.
These prosthetic limbs are not only attractive, but they are also intelligent and you can even control them with your thoughts as if they were your real limbs.
Watch this inspirational video below to hear Hugh Herr talk about this incredible technology: