28 May ‘Freedom!’ Obi Robot Gives Student with Cerebral Palsy Independence

May 28, 2018

By: Lucy Tompkins

Source: Billings Gazette

During a recent lunch period at Paxson Elementary School, a group of third-graders gathered around a table to eat, opening their lunchboxes from home, or setting down their cafeteria trays. One student brought something different: a device that looked like it came from a Star Wars movie.

Nine-year-old Heath Montgomery, who has cerebral palsy, sat down for lunch before his new robot feeding assistant, Obi.

Heath’s friends all watched excitedly as Obi woke up. The device is essentially a platter with four different serving bowls, attached to a robotic arm with a spoon at the end. Heath can control the robot’s arm by pushing different pads that instruct it to scoop from his bowl of choice, and to bring the food to his mouth.

“Freedom!” Heath exclaimed as Obi served him his first bite.

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