Biomechatronics 103


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Biomechatronics 103

  1. 1. Biomechatronics Eric Minaker October 15, 2013
  2. 2. What is Biomechatronics? ● Interdisciplinary science aiming to integrate mechanical and electrical elements with biological organisms ● Goal is to create new, innovative prosthetics that can restore mobility to human motor control that was lost or impaired
  3. 3. History of Prosthetics ● Ancient Egypt pioneered simple prosthetics ● First evidence of modern prosthetics in 1508 ● German mercenary created articulated metal hands after losing his right arm in battle ● In 1800 James Potts created the first prosthesis to use tendon movement to control the limb ● In modern times, prosthetics have have gained much larger ranges of motion and new interfaces to control their movement
  4. 4. Current Research in Biomechatronics ● MIT, Carnegie Mellon University, and Arizona State University are pioneering forces in the field ● MIT has been responsible for numerous scientific and technological breakthroughs ● Carnegie Mellon maintain a smaller lab that is able to research a few topics intensively ● Arizona State University has focussed on tactile feedback in hands and grip responses
  5. 5. MIT Research ● Muscle actuated fish ○ One of the first biomechatronics research projects ○ Uses frog leg muscles to power a robotic fish ● Neural control and implants ○ Will allow for natural control of limbs with changing terrain ○ Provides more accurate tactile feedback from prosthesis ● Bionic Skin ○ Creates a seamless interface between human skin and contact surfaces of the prosthesis ○ Allows for more natural movement
  6. 6. Carnegie Mellon University Research ● User specific prosthetic design ○ Plans to create a versatile testbed to rapidly create unique prosthetics based on a user’s needs ○ Not only custom molds, but interfaces, motors, and joints ○ Will reduce overall cost and help with chronic walking speed, falling, and pain associated with lower limb prosthetics
  7. 7. Arizona State University Research ● Grip responses ○ Research into how hands react to gripping objects of varying shapes ○ Focusses on pressure applied when rotating and handling oddly shaped objects ● Tactile sensor skin ○ Like MIT’s bionic skin, would allow for accurate tactile feedback from the prosthetic ○ Unlike current sensors used on hands, skin can be deformed and is conformable
  8. 8. Current State of Biomechatronics and Intelligent Prosthetics ● iLimb ○ Variable control for each digit ○ Pressure sensitive skin ○ Uses tendon and muscle activity to control digit and limb movement
  9. 9. Contact More information can be found at