Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search

 


UC trialling a powered exoskeleton device

UC trialling a powered exoskeleton device to help people with knee joint issues

The University of Canterbury (UC) is fine tuning a high-tech powered exoskeleton lower-limb device which will assist patients recovering from injury and help the elderly by moving their legs.

XiaoQi Chen and Mervin Chandrapal demonstrate their walking exoskeletal device


UC mechanical engineering professor XiaoQi Chen (Pronounced: ZhaoChi Chen) has been overseeing the building and testing of the current UC prototype exoskeleton device which provides assistance to the knee joint.

``The device is worn by the user to assist limb movement. It operates on an ‘assist-as-needed’ principle. We will conduct clinical trials in the future, but currently we are only testing on able-bodied people for preliminary experiments,’’ Professor XiaoQi Chen says.

``Our device does not force movement of the patient along a predefined path but it assists the movement as directed by the user. We are improving the current prototype and sensor systems to allow greater freedom and better control of the exoskeleton system.

``We expect to be able to run more significant trials in late February or March.’’

Professor XiaoQi says the exoskeleton device could potentially have huge applications in automated rehabilitation. The testing of a second prototype, on both able-bodied users and those with limited mobility, will be a substantial step toward the device being used on patients in need.

UC’s mechanical engineering team has designed the entire exoskeleton system with background knowledge of the field based on research undertaken by PhD student Mervin Chandrapal.

``This cutting-edge technology will be a huge assistance to partially disabled people by reducing the effort required to perform their movement. The exoskeleton actively estimates the user’s intended movement using the user’s own biological signals and then provides assistive force to reduce the muscular effort required to execute knee extension and flexion motion.

``As well as supporting the elderly to perform activities of daily living the device could assist a patient recovering from an injury by reducing the load on the limb, or in an industrial environment, it could provide assistive force to workers performing repetitive task that require significant muscular effort.

``It could reduce the cost usually associated with intensive hands on therapy. Also, a home based rehabilitation system could significantly shorten the recovery time.’’

Though the device was designed to support the knee joint, it could be adapted to support other body joints especially in rehabilitation for upper-limbs, Professor XiaoQi says.



© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Theatre: Ralph McCubbin Howell Wins 2014 Bruce Mason Award

The Bruce Mason Playwriting Award was presented to Ralph McCubbin Howell at the Playmarket Accolades in Wellington on 23 November 2014. More>>

ALSO:

One Good Tern: Fairy Tern Crowned NZ Seabird Of The Year

The fairy tern and the Fiji petrel traded the lead in the poll several times. But a late surge saw it come out on top with 1882 votes. The Fiji petrel won 1801 votes, and 563 people voted for the little blue penguin. More>>

Music Awards: Lorde Reigns Supreme

Following a hugely successful year locally and internationally, Lorde has done it again taking out no less than six Tuis at the 49th annual Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards. More>>

ALSO:

EPMU: Fourth Pike River Anniversary

Representatives of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union are proud to stand with the Pike River families to mark four years since 29 men lost their lives. More>>

ALSO:

'Kindara': Unusual Ginger Coloured Kiwi Chick Released To Taupo Creche

A cute little kiwi chick with an unusual ginger tinge to its feathers has just been released to Wairakei Golf & Sanctuary Kiwi Creche in Taupo after hatching at Rainbow Springs' Kiwi Encounter. More>>

Werewolf: The Complicatist : Bob Dylan Himself, And By Others

Bob Dylan is about to release a six CD version of the entire Basement Tapes sessions he recorded with the Band 40 years ago. To mark the occasion, I’ve rustled together some favourite cover versions of Dylan songs, and a few lesser-known tracks by the great man. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: Gone Girl : The Trouble With Amy

Philip Matthews: Three words to describe the David Fincher film Gone Girl: cynical, topical and ridiculous. Ridiculous isn’t a negative. More>>

ALSO:

11/11: Armistice Day Peace Vigils

On Armistice Day 2014, the second in the series of peace vigils that will take place three times each year during the World War One centenary will be held in Hokianga, Whangarei, Auckland, Tauranga, Otaki, Lower Hutt, Wellington and Takaka. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Education
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news