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Human-oriented methods for intuitive and fault-tolerant control of wearable robotic devices

 

This project combines methods from engineering and human sciences to tackle the multidisciplinary field of wearable robotic devices for motion support and augmentation.

Through considering human factors in control design, algorithms are envisioned to provide efficient and natural assistance and prevent users‘ from feeling to be “controlled by the device”.

Psychophysical exploration of how humans experience the stiffness of wearable robots guides impedance control design. With appropriate adaptation, those algorithms facilitate versatile locomotion types and become fault-tolerant. Additionally, psychometric and human-in-the-loop studies examine the impact of the algorithms on the embodiment of the devices by their users. For practical validation, an adaptive shank prosthesis and a powered knee orthosis are used as wearable robotic demonstrators. Finally, all results inform the specification of a human-oriented control design method to improve user acceptance and satisfaction.

Sponsored by “Athene Young Investigator” – Program of TU Darmstadt