The Soft Exosuit That Can Help You Walk Again
Gareth Andrews / 4 years ago
Technology can be used to do everything from helping create self-driving cars and trucks to giving people a computer in their eyes. One thing that technology looks to do is help those with disabilities do the things that everyone else takes for granted, such as walking or even standing. A team from Harvard has taken this dream a step closer with a new soft wearable exosuit designed to help people with lower limb disabilities walk again.
The soft exosuit was designed by Dr. Conor Walsh, the founder of Harvard’s Biodesign lab, who after teaming up with everyone from robotics, biomedical engineers and apparel designers came up with the design for a soft fitting exosuit that combines clothing and exoskeletons. Working together with ReWalk Robotics, the Wyss Institute hopes to bring the robotics suit to the public market for everyone to enjoy.
Designed with the idea of combining the assistance technology of an exoskeleton with light weight fabric-based materials, the new exosuit uses powerful actuators built into the belt to help the wearers legs move, the almost natural looking solution looks to help those with difficulty moving to go about their actions as if they were everybody else.
The technology is just a start with Walsh hoping that their work has been “the catalyst for entirely new forms of functional textiles, flexible power systems and control strategies that integrate the suit and its wearer in ways that mimic the natural biomechanics of the human musculoskeletal system”.