Combining bovine cells with a liquid gel and sending it through a 3-D printer followed by tiny particles could lead to the development of synthetic ears that will be capable of receiving and transmitting sound, researchers at Princeton University revealed.
The printer has been programmed to shape the material into a bionic ear, and the silver particles are turned into a coiled antenna, which like other antennas are capable of picking up radio signals, which ear interprets as sound, Fox News reported.
Michael McAlpine, the professor who led the project, said what the team we really achieved was to show the capabilities of 3-D printing.
The printed ear is soft to touch and is translucent.
The ear is cultivated for ten weeks, where the cells are allowed to multiply, and hardened tissue are formed around the antenna.
Manu Mannoor, a graduate student who worked with McAlpine on the project, demonstrated how the process works.
McAlpine and his team attached electrodes onto the backs of the ears in the printing process showed the ability of antenna to pick up radio signals.
When the team broadcast Beethoven's 'Fur Elise' to a pair of cultivated ears, the electrodes transmitted the signal to a set of speakers.