A duo of French artists has developed a robotic arm that can autonomously create intricate tattoos on humans.
The industrial robot arm ‘Tatoue’ uses a 3D scanner to capture images of the body part that will be tattooed.
The scan is then uploaded to a software that helps apply the design onto the scanned surface, as well as export the pattern in code to the robot.
Tatoue, created by artists Pierre Emm and Johan da Silveira at San Francisco-based software company Autodesk, uses the same needle and ink as traditional tattoo guns.
"The fact that there is a lack of technological evolution in the tattoo industry over the past one hundred years interested us," the artists were quoted as saying by ‘Quartz’.
"Inherently, (industrial) machines are really designed to be working separate to people, behind big barricades," said David Thomasson, who led the Autodesk team.
"The standards don’t exist for this (robot) so our health and safety team went through that in minute detail and got advice form external groups," he said.
The design is pre-programmed but a human controls the robot’s speed and progression. The tattoo recipient also has an emergency stop option.
"The robot does cause pain when it tattoos – but no more than a normal tattoo," said Julia Cabral, head of safety at Autodesk.