Military Specific Advancements in Prosthetic Limb Design and Performance

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Defense
Branch
Office of the Secretary of Defense
Amount:
$99,932.00
Award Year:
2005
Program:
STTR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
W81XWH-05-C-0147
Award Id:
76641
Agency Tracking Number:
O054-005-2016
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
n/a
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
63 Potomac Street, San Francisco, CA, 94117
Hubzone Owned:
N
Minority Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
190152921
Principal Investigator:
Nathan Harding
Principal Investigator
(415) 533-8062
nathan@berkeleyexoworks.com
Business Contact:
Jack Peurach
President
(415) 722-9809
jack@berkeleyexoworks.com
Research Institution:
UNIV. OF CALIFORNIA
Homayoon Kazerooni
Mechanical Engineering Dept, 5124 Etcheverry Hall
Berkeley, CA, 94720
(510) 642-2964
Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
This proposal seeks to improve the performance of above-the-knee prostheses by developing several key technologies that are currently unavailable in such devices. First, the high power output required of the prostheses in military maneuvers such as climbing or running will be provided by a customized lightweight and compact active actuation scheme. Although power limitations traditionally barred prostheses from employing actuation, our preliminary analysis has shown great potential for energy recovery and regeneration by harnessing the cyclical nature of locomotion. Coupled with the design of an actively actuated prosthetic knee will be the development of a lightweight energy recovery/regeneration system. Based on our initial analysis, such a system would not only greatly improve the performance of the prosthetic by allowing for a powered joint, but also decrease the frequency, if not completely eliminate the need, of changing or charging batteries. The system will be controlled with a novel impedance control paradigm that will rely on sensors taking measurements from both the amputee's remaining limb and the ground. Our preliminary investigations indicate that by successfully combining these three elements (active actuation, energy recovery system, and multi-input impedance control), a high performance prosthetic suitable to the rigors of active duty personnel will result.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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