Heriot-Watt’s Body and Emotion Lab is equipped with kinematic equipment such as force sensors and cameras which let researchers measure the exact distance between fingers when grasping objects and the forces applied when people lift them. Measuring this whilst impacting brain activity can tell us about the underlying cognitive processes of planning and controlling body movements.
Using the Body and Emotion Lab’s advanced stimulation equipment, researchers can temporarily interfere with the functioning of the brain by introducing a low and safe amount of electric current which can either impair or improve the brain's performance and cognitive fuctioning.
The tDCs the researchers use for their studies.
4th Year undergraduates like Myrto can use this equipment during their final year dissertation project.
Myrto’s research is trying to understand how the brain effects the Size-Weight Illusion. Using the Lab’s force sensors and brain stimulation equipment simultaneously, she is measuring the fingertip force that people apply to lift objects whilst under different levels of stimulation to the right parietal lobe of the brain.
Myrto says that 4th Year has been without a doubt her favourite year because of the research she has been able to carry out, putting her theoretical knowledge into practice. She now has plans to continue using the Body and Emotion Lab after she graduates to develop her skills as a researcher.
Research in the lab is currently conducted by Dr Anna Sedda as well as by a number of undergraduate and postgraduate students supervised by her.
For more information about the research conducted in the lab please visit the Brain stimulation Lab webpage.
The Body and Emotion lab is located on the top floor of the Hugh Nesbitt building.
It houses a wide range of equipment for sensorimotor control experiments:
ATI Nano17 force transducers
For recording fingertip forces and torques
A TrakStar magnetic motion tracker
For the recording of kinematic data
A 3-Camera ProReflex optical tracking system
For the wireless recording of kinematic data