OPTIMAL PROSTHESES, ORTHOSES AND EXOSKELETONS FOR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY
Keywords: Wearable robotics, multibody system modelling, optimization
AbstractWearable physical assistive devices, such as prostheses, orthoses and exoskeletons are great inventions to enable a large range of subjects with very different disabilities, injuries or diseases to perform physical activity who would not be able to do so otherwise. The purpose of this paper is to present the benefits of model-based optimization methods to analyze and improve these devices such that they are best adapted to address the need of different pathologies or even individual subjects. Using detailed multibody system models of the human and the wearable devices, it is possible to tune parameters related to the kinematics, dynamics and control of the devices or even test completely new design ideas or setups. Optimization problems are formulated and solved in order to fit simulated motions of the combined system of human and wearable device to desired behaviour e.g. coming from motion recordings of healthy subjects or to generate motions that optimize particular performance criteria. The presented approach also allows to study the frequently asked question if certain prosthetic devices create and advantage of the wearer over able-bodies subjects.
Authors can retain copyright, while granting the International Society of Biomechanics in Sports (ISBS) the right of first publication.