Providing Innovative Solutions to Powered Human Assistance
SpringActive explores technology to augment human locomotion. Our goals range from realizing full ankle normalization for persons with lower limb amputation to amplifying the capabilities of the modern industrial worker. You can read on to find out more about our projects below.
Developing advanced powered prostheses that restore biological gait to people with lower limb amputation is a primary focus for SpringActive. Over many years we have developed high functioning, robust, and practical powered limbs.
Powered prostheses built at SpringActive have successfully realized full ankle normalization by providing all of the energy seen in human gait. The prosthesis marketplace is competitive and demanding, requiring that devices be lightweight with long battery life. Novel actuation approaches, accurate engineering models, and intuitive control methodologies are critical to meeting the value proposition of the market. Funding support from the SBIR program has and continues to be instrumental in the R&D process.
Exoskeleton research at SpringActive has taken many forms from load support to personal augmentation.
Load support exos are fundamentally backpacks with legs. The combination of efficient actuation, elegant kinematic structures, and intuitive control methods produce results that are high performing, ergonomic, and effective.
Personal augmentation exos either passively or actively add torque to the leg joints. Elegant solutions are key here to design systems that are lightweight and transparent to the user, a difficult task.
The purpose of this 4 legged walking robot is to explore efficient gait of autonomous load carrying robots. The platform allows for the exploration and testing of novel kinematic configurations of legs and walking control designed to minimize gait energy. The result was of the test in the video was an energy cost of transport of 0.26.
SpringActive is made up of an interdisciplinary team of researchers. Principal investigators work along side a highly skilled engineering and technical team to further the research goals. SpringActive also collaborates with many well known academic researchers and clinicians in the engineering, biomedical, and orthotics & prosthetics fields.
SpringActive's research focus is creating, restoring, and augmenting gait. Core competencies accurate system modelling, compliant actuator design, robust wearable robot controls, advanced mechanism design, embedded electronics, elegant passive mechanical systems, composites, prototyping, and fabrication. We continue to develop intellectual property in these areas and use a portion of the royalties generated from licensed products to support exploration into new areas.
SpringActive has a history of successful collaboration in the development and licensing of intellectual property. Wearable robotics is an exciting and growing field and we are always exploring new possibilities.