Matching Items (12)

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Design and Development of the Soft Robotic Back Orthosis

Description

Low back pain is a disorder which affects almost 80% of the American population at some time during their lifespan. Approximately, 90% of these episodes are resolved within six weeks

Low back pain is a disorder which affects almost 80% of the American population at some time during their lifespan. Approximately, 90% of these episodes are resolved within six weeks to three months. As low back pain is usually a symptom of a medical condition; many cases cannot be given a definite diagnosis which renders the condition difficult to treat. The estimated annual cost for back pain treatment amounts to $50 billion, in the United States alone. Several devices have already been designed for low back pain assistance. However, in the majority, the main drawback appears to be the rigidity of the device, which limits flexibility and comfort. Soft pneumatic actuators have the potential to provide the appropriate applications for low back pain prior- and post-surgery rehabilitation purposes. In this work, the design and development of a soft robotic back orthotic device that has the capability to relieve back pain by assisting patients to fully achieve the upright position and stabilize the lumbosacral spine, is presented. Unlike conventional robotic assistive devices, this pneumatically actuated back orthosis provides dynamic support while being light weight, comfortable and cost affordable.

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  • 2017-05

Design and Fabrication of Soft Robotic Nautilus

Description

The field of soft robotics is a very quickly growing field that has yet to be fully explored or implemented in all of the possible applications. Soft robotics shows the

The field of soft robotics is a very quickly growing field that has yet to be fully explored or implemented in all of the possible applications. Soft robotics shows the greatest degree of possibility for mimicking biological systems effectively and accurately. This study seeks to set the groundwork for the development of a biomimetic nautilus using soft robotic methods. The study shows background research and discusses the methods used to develop a nautilus themed sub aquatic robot that uses a double bladder system and a pump to generate thrust for movement. The study shows how the unit would be fabricated and constructed. The study also explores why the second stage of the design failed and how it could potentially be fixed in future iterations.

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  • 2017-05

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The Design, Fabrication, and Testing of a New Design of Soft Robotic Module Using Knit FRTAs

Description

For the basis of this project, a particular interest is taken in soft robotic arms for the assistance of daily living tasks. A detailed overview and function of the soft

For the basis of this project, a particular interest is taken in soft robotic arms for the assistance of daily living tasks. A detailed overview and function of the soft robotic modules comprised within the soft robotic arm will be the main focus. In this thesis, design and fabrication methods of fabric reinforced textile actuators (FRTAs) have their design expanded. Original design changes to the actuators that improve their performance are detailed in this report. This report also includes an explanation of how the FRTA’s are made, explaining step by step how to make each sub-assembly and explain its function. Comparisons between the presented module and the function of the soft poly limb from previous works are also expanded. Various forms of testing, such as force testing, range of motion testing, and stiffness testing are conducted on the soft robotic module to provide insights into its performance and characteristics. Lastly, present plans for various forms of future work and integration of the soft robotic module into a full soft robotic arm assembly are discussed.

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  • 2020-05

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Design, Characterization, and Evaluation of a Dynamic Soft Robotic Prosthetic Socket Interface

Description

Prosthetic sockets are a static interface for dynamic residual limbs. As the user's activity level increases, the volume of the residual limb decreases by up to 11% and increases by

Prosthetic sockets are a static interface for dynamic residual limbs. As the user's activity level increases, the volume of the residual limb decreases by up to 11% and increases by as much as 7% after activity. Currently, volume fluctuation is addressed by adding/removing prosthetic socks to change the profile of the residual limb. However, this is time consuming. These painful/functional issues demand a prosthetic socket with an adjustable interface that can adapt to the user's needs. This thesis presents a prototype design for a dynamic soft robotic interface which addresses this need. The actuators are adjustable depending on the user's activity level, and their structure provides targeted compression to the soft tissue which helps to limit movement of the bone relative to the socket. The engineering process was used to create this design by defining system level requirements, exploring the design space, selecting a design, and then using testing/analysis to optimize that design. The final design for the soft robotic interface meets the applicable requirements, while other requirements for the electronics/controls will be completed as future work. Testing of the prototype demonstrated promising potential for the design with further refinement. Work on this project should be continued in future research/thesis projects in order to create a viable consumer product which can improve lower limb amputee's quality of life.

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  • 2018-05

Adaptive Technologies using Soft Robotic Bladders

Description

The traditional understanding of robotics includes mechanisms of rigid structures, which can manipulate surrounding objects, taking advantage of mechanical actuators such as motors and servomechanisms. Although these methods provide the

The traditional understanding of robotics includes mechanisms of rigid structures, which can manipulate surrounding objects, taking advantage of mechanical actuators such as motors and servomechanisms. Although these methods provide the underlying fundamental concepts behind much of modern technological infrastructure, in fields such as manufacturing, automation, and biomedical application, the robotic structures formed by rigid axels on mechanical actuators lack the delicate differential sensors and actuators associated with known biological systems. The rigid structures of traditional robotics also inhibit the use of simple mechanisms in congested and/or fragile environments. By observing a variety of biological systems, it is shown that nature models its structures over millions of years of evolution into a combination of soft structures and rigid skeletal interior supports. Through technological bio-inspired designs, researchers hope to mimic some of the complex behaviors of biological mechanisms using pneumatic actuators coupled with highly compliant materials that exhibit relatively large reversible elastic strain. This paper begins the brief history of soft robotics, the various classifications of pneumatic fluid systems, the associated difficulties that arise with the unpredictable nature of fluid reactions, the methods of pneumatic actuators in use today, the current industrial applications of soft robotics, and focuses in large on the construction of a universally adaptable soft robotic gripper and material application tool. The central objective of this experiment is to compatibly pair traditional rigid robotics with the emerging technologies of sort robotic actuators. This will be done by combining a traditional rigid robotic arm with a soft robotic manipulator bladder for the purposes of object manipulation and excavation of extreme environments.

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  • 2016-05

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Design and Fabrication of Pneumatic Actuators for a Soft Ankle Foot Orthosis

Description

This paper presents the design of a pneumatic actuator for a soft ankle-foot orthosis, called the Multi-material Actuator for Variable Stiffness (MAVS). This pneumatic actuator consists of an inflatable soft

This paper presents the design of a pneumatic actuator for a soft ankle-foot orthosis, called the Multi-material Actuator for Variable Stiffness (MAVS). This pneumatic actuator consists of an inflatable soft fabric actuator fixed between two layers of rigid retainer pieces. The MAVS is designed to be integrated with a soft robotic ankle-foot orthosis (SR-AFO) exosuit to aid in supporting the human ankle in the inversion/eversion directions. This design aims to assist individuals affected with chronic ankle instability (CAI) or other impairments to the ankle joint. The MAVS design is made from compliant fabric materials, layered and constrained by thin rigid retainers to prevent volume increase during actuation. The design was optimized to provide the greatest stiffness and least deflection for a beam positioned as a cantilever with a point load. The design of the MAVS took into account passive stiffness of the actuator when combining rigid and compliant materials so that stiffness is maximized when inflated and minimal when passive. An analytic model of the MAVS was created to evaluate the effects in stiffness observed by varying the ratio in length between the rigid pieces and the soft actuator. The results from the analytic model were compared to experimentally obtained results of the MAVS. The MAVS with the greatest stiffness was observed when the gap between the rigid retainers was smallest and the rigid retainer length was smallest. The MAVS design with the highest stiffness at 100 kPa was determined, which required 26.71 ± 0.06 N to deflect the actuator 20 mm, and a resulting stiffness of 1,335.5 N/m and 9.1% margin of error from the model predictions.

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Date Created
  • 2020-05

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DEVELOPMENT OF A SOFT ROBOTIC THIRD ARM

Description

For my thesis I worked in ASU’s Bio-Inspired Mechatronics lab on a project lead by PhD student Pham H. Nguyen (Berm) to develop an assistive soft robotic supernumerary limb. I

For my thesis I worked in ASU’s Bio-Inspired Mechatronics lab on a project lead by PhD student Pham H. Nguyen (Berm) to develop an assistive soft robotic supernumerary limb. I contributed to the design and evaluation of two prototypes: the silicon based Soft Poly Limb (SPL) and one bladder-based fabric arm, the fabric Soft Poly Limb (fSPL). For both arms I was responsible for the design of 3D printed components (molds, end caps, etc.) as well as the evaluation of the completed prototypes by comparing the actual performance of the arms to the finite element predictions. I contributed to the writing of two published papers describing the design and evaluation of the two arms. After the completion of the fSPL I attempted to create a quasi-static model of the actuators driving the fSPL.

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  • 2019-05

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Design of a Portable Pneumatic Exosuit for Knee Extension Assistance with Gait Sensing using Fabric-based Inflatable Insole Sensors

Description

Current exosuit technologies utilizing soft inflatable actuators for gait assistance have drawbacks of having slow dynamics and limited portability. The first part of this thesis focuses on addressing the aforementioned

Current exosuit technologies utilizing soft inflatable actuators for gait assistance have drawbacks of having slow dynamics and limited portability. The first part of this thesis focuses on addressing the aforementioned issues by using inflatable actuator composites (IAC) and a portable pneumatic source. Design, fabrication and finite element modeling of the IAC are presented. Volume optimization of the IAC is done by varying its internal volume using finite element methods. A portable air source for use in pneumatically actuated wearable devices is also presented. Evaluation of the system is carried out by analyzing its maximum pressure and flow output. Electro-pneumatic setup, design and fabrication of the developed air source are also shown. To provide assistance to the user using the exosuit in appropriate gait phases, a gait detection system is needed. In the second part of this thesis, a gait sensing system utilizing soft fabric based inflatable sensors embedded in a silicone based shoe insole is developed. Design, fabrication and mechanical characterization of the soft gait detection sensors are given. In addition, integration of the sensors, each capable of measuring loads of 700N in a silicone based shoe insole is also shown along with its possible application in detection of various gait phases. Finally, a possible integration of the actuators, air source and gait detection shoes in making of a portable soft exosuit for knee assistance is given.

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Date Created
  • 2020

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The Design and Characterization of a Soft Haptic Interface for Rehabilitation of Impaired Hand Function

Description

The human hand comprises complex sensorimotor functions that can be impaired by neurological diseases and traumatic injuries. Effective rehabilitation can bring the impaired hand back to a functional state because

The human hand comprises complex sensorimotor functions that can be impaired by neurological diseases and traumatic injuries. Effective rehabilitation can bring the impaired hand back to a functional state because of the plasticity of the central nervous system to relearn and remodel the lost synapses in the brain. Current rehabilitation therapies focus on strengthening motor skills, such as grasping, employ multiple objects of varying stiffness and devices that are bulky, costly, and have limited range of stiffness due to the rigid mechanisms employed in their variable stiffness actuators. This research project presents a portable cost-effective soft robotic haptic device with a broad stiffness range that is adjustable and can be utilized in both clinical and home settings. The device eliminates the need for multiple objects by employing a pneumatic soft structure made with highly compliant materials that act as the actuator as well as the structure of the haptic interface. It is made with interchangeable soft elastomeric sleeves that can be customized to include materials of varying stiffness to increase or decrease the stiffness range. The device is fabricated using existing 3D printing technologies, and polymer molding and casting techniques, thus keeping the cost low and throughput high. The haptic interface is linked to either an open-loop system that allows for an increased pressure during usage or closed-loop system that provides pressure regulation in accordance with the stiffness the user specifies. A preliminary evaluation is performed to characterize the effective controllable region of variance in stiffness. Results indicate that the region of controllable stiffness was in the center of the device, where the stiffness appeared to plateau with each increase in pressure. The two control systems are tested to derive relationships between internal pressure, grasping force exertion on the surface, and displacement using multiple probing points on the haptic device. Additional quantitative evaluation is performed with study participants and juxtaposed to a qualitative analysis to ensure adequate perception in compliance variance. Finally, a qualitative evaluation showed that greater than 60% of the trials resulted in the correct perception of stiffness in the haptic device.

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Date Created
  • 2018

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User Intent Detection and Control of a Soft Poly-Limb

Description

This work presents the integration of user intent detection and control in the development of the fluid-driven, wearable, and continuum, Soft Poly-Limb (SPL). The SPL utilizes the numerous traits of

This work presents the integration of user intent detection and control in the development of the fluid-driven, wearable, and continuum, Soft Poly-Limb (SPL). The SPL utilizes the numerous traits of soft robotics to enable a novel approach to provide safe and compliant mobile manipulation assistance to healthy and impaired users. This wearable system equips the user with an additional limb made of soft materials that can be controlled to produce complex three-dimensional motion in space, like its biological counterparts with hydrostatic muscles. Similar to the elephant trunk, the SPL is able to manipulate objects using various end effectors, such as suction adhesion or a soft grasper, and can also wrap its entire length around objects for manipulation. User control of the limb is demonstrated using multiple user intent detection modalities. Further, the performance of the SPL studied by testing its capability to interact safely and closely around a user through a spatial mobility test. Finally, the limb’s ability to assist the user is explored through multitasking scenarios and pick and place tests with varying mounting locations of the arm around the user’s body. The results of these assessments demonstrate the SPL’s ability to safely interact with the user while exhibiting promising performance in assisting the user with a wide variety of tasks, in both work and general living scenarios.

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Date Created
  • 2018