The arm has been approved and the DEKA system was designed by the same man that created the Segway. There’s no company yet set up to manufacture the device yet and thus so there’s no idea on what the could end up being.
The vide below tells you a bit more about how it works. More complex tasks can be accomplished versus what current prosthetics do.
The project began back in 2009 so it took a while to develop and of course new versions of a product like this will always be work in progress to update and and bring more functionality in. You can read more at the DARPA page for additional information. The Department of Veterans Affairs-funded Optimization Study, which included data from 36 participants contributed to the approval of the arm as well as information from the US Army. BD
Results of the study showed that 90 percent of the 36 participants were able to perform complex activities with the DEKA Arm System that they could not otherwise do with their current prosthesis such as preparing food, using locks and keys, brushing the hair, using zippers and feeding themselves.
What sets the DEKA Arm System apart from other prosthetic arms is that it is the first to have the capability to perform several movements at a time using electrical signals generated by the contraction of the muscles near the area where the artificial arm is attached. The electromyogram (EMG) electrodes send the electrical signal to a computer processor within the system where it is converted and used to power and control up to 10 movements.
DEKA has yet to finds a partner to mass-manufacturer its arm system. Until then, the device will not yet be sold. The price of the DEKA Arm System is also yet to be determined.