A smart prosthetic ankle that adapts to different terrain!
July 16, 2018
A new prosthetic ankle has been developed that is virtually close to the real thing! This is a prosthetic ankle that moves on its own, adapting to the user's walk and the surface on which it lands.
The ankle does a lot of work when we walk. There are very few prostheses that can replicate all its motions. This means that the work done by a prosthetic ankle is quite basic. This new prototype, developed by a mechanical engineering professor in the United States, goes much further.
Inside the prototype are a motor and actuator, controlled by a chip. The chip senses and classifies motion and determines how each step should look. The device adapts to what is around it.
So a person can walk up and down slopes, up the stairs and down, and device figures out what the person is doing and functions the way it should.
When it senses that the foot has lifted up for a step, it can lift the toe up to keep it clear, and this way exposing the heel so that when the limb comes down, it can roll into the next step. By reading the pressure both from above and below, it can make the step feel close to the natural one.
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