Standing and Walking while using a Walker-like Exoskeleton
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Publisher:The Ohio State University
Series/Report no.:The Ohio State University. Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Honors Theses; 2020
Assistive devices that reduce the metabolic energy cost of walking will help humans with movement disorders or other mobility losses walk with less effort, and potentially increase their mobility and help with rehabilitation. Zimmerman (2016) designed a passive and powered cart-like walker exoskeleton that has the potential to reduce the metabolic energy cost of walking and increase stability. Our original goal was to improve the powered version of the cart and examine the speed and metabolic cost benefits of the powered version during overground walking and treadmill walking. Instead, here, we examine the stability during quiet standing of human subjects while standing with the passive version of the cart. Quiet standing stability is usually examined using the net center of pressure at the feet, examining its variability. Here, we analyze the individual limb centers of mass and the individual limb ground reaction forces to characterize standing stability. We find that in most conditions: (1) There is a positive correlation between the left and right components of center of pressure in the anterior-posterior direction, (2) a positive correlation between the left and right foot ground reaction forces in the medial-lateral and anterior-posterior direction. (3) The left and right foot medial-lateral center of pressure displacements are negatively correlated. (4) The correlation between medial-lateral and anterior-posterior center of pressure displacement is negative for the left foot and positive for the right foot. (5) The combined center of pressure displacement in the medial-lateral and anterior-posterior direction is positively correlated. (6) There are no observable differences between the Hands Off and Hands On centers of pressure and ground reaction forces. In future work, we seek to improve both analytic techniques to process the data as well as perform experiments with the powered version of the cart.
Academic Major: Mechanical Engineering
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