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Article
Publication date: 2 April 2019

Longhan Xie and Ledeng Huang

The purpose of this paper is to design a lower limb exoskeleton to enhance hemiplegic patient’s muscle strength and help the affected side return to normal gait after a…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to design a lower limb exoskeleton to enhance hemiplegic patient’s muscle strength and help the affected side return to normal gait after a long period of training.

Design/methodology/approach

A wire rope-driven exoskeleton that combines rigid bracket and flexible driven method was presented to assist the patients with rehabilitative walking training. By using three noncontact cameras, the patient’s gait was captured and the target trajectory of the affected side was analyzed. Meanwhile, a controlling strategy of the affected side, which mimics the gait of the healthy side, was developed to help hemiplegic patients with varying degrees of hemiplegic gait obtain personalized walking rehabilitation training.

Findings

The results show that the hemiplegic gait of hip excessive abduction and strephenopodia was prevented. After wearing the exoskeleton, the movement trajectories of both sides of the lower limb were approximately identical. Based on the controlling strategy, the exoskeleton can correct the impaired gait and provide assistance for patients during walking. The exoskeleton has great benefits in walking rehabilitation training for hemiplegic patients.

Originality/value

This work improves the efficiency of the patient’s individualized training in the room. The presented exoskeleton provides great benefits in walking rehabilitation training for hemiplegic patients.

Details

Assembly Automation, vol. 40 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-5154

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Article
Publication date: 3 April 2007

Huiyu Zhou and Huosheng Hu

This paper seeks to present an inertial motion tracking system for monitoring movements of human upper limbs in order to support a home‐based rehabilitation scheme in…

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1263

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to present an inertial motion tracking system for monitoring movements of human upper limbs in order to support a home‐based rehabilitation scheme in which the recovery of stroke patients' motor function through repetitive exercises needs to be continuously monitored and appropriately evaluated.

Design/methodology/approach

Two inertial sensors are placed on the upper and lower arms in order to obtain acceleration and turning rates. Then the position of the upper limbs can be deduced by using the kinematical model of the upper limbs that was designed in the previous paper. The tracking system starts from inertial data acquisition and pre‐filtering, followed by a number of processes such as transformation of coordinate systems of sensor data, and kinematical modelling and optimization of position estimation.

Findings

The motion detector using the proposed kinematic model only has drifts in the measurements. Fusion of acceleration and orientation data can effectively solve the drift problem without the involvement of a Kalman filter.

Research limitations/implications

The image rendering is not undertaken when the data sampling is performed. This non‐synchronization is applied in order to avoid the breaks in the continuous sampling.

Originality/value

This new motion detector can work in different environments without significant drifts. Also, this system only deploys two inertial sensors but is able to estimate the position of the wrist, elbow and shoulder joints.

Details

Sensor Review, vol. 27 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0260-2288

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Article
Publication date: 11 June 2019

Muhammad Yahya, Jawad Ali Shah, Kushsairy Abdul Kadir, Zulkhairi M. Yusof, Sheroz Khan and Arif Warsi

Motion capture system (MoCap) has been used in measuring the human body segments in several applications including film special effects, health care, outer-space and

Abstract

Purpose

Motion capture system (MoCap) has been used in measuring the human body segments in several applications including film special effects, health care, outer-space and under-water navigation systems, sea-water exploration pursuits, human machine interaction and learning software to help teachers of sign language. The purpose of this paper is to help the researchers to select specific MoCap system for various applications and the development of new algorithms related to upper limb motion.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper provides an overview of different sensors used in MoCap and techniques used for estimating human upper limb motion.

Findings

The existing MoCaps suffer from several issues depending on the type of MoCap used. These issues include drifting and placement of Inertial sensors, occlusion and jitters in Kinect, noise in electromyography signals and the requirement of a well-structured, calibrated environment and time-consuming task of placing markers in multiple camera systems.

Originality/value

This paper outlines the issues and challenges in MoCaps for measuring human upper limb motion and provides an overview on the techniques to overcome these issues and challenges.

Details

Sensor Review, vol. 39 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0260-2288

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Article
Publication date: 12 August 2014

Wei Meng, Quan Liu, Zude Zhou and Qingsong Ai

The purpose of this paper is to propose a seamless active interaction control method integrating electromyography (EMG)-triggered assistance and the adaptive impedance…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a seamless active interaction control method integrating electromyography (EMG)-triggered assistance and the adaptive impedance control scheme for parallel robot-assisted lower limb rehabilitation and training.

Design/methodology/approach

An active interaction control strategy based on EMG motion recognition and adaptive impedance model is implemented on a six-degrees of freedom parallel robot for lower limb rehabilitation. The autoregressive coefficients of EMG signals integrating with a support vector machine classifier are utilized to predict the movement intention and trigger the robot assistance. An adaptive impedance controller is adopted to influence the robot velocity during the exercise, and in the meantime, the user’s muscle activity level is evaluated online and the robot impedance is adapted in accordance with the recovery conditions.

Findings

Experiments on healthy subjects demonstrated that the proposed method was able to drive the robot according to the user’s intention, and the robot impedance can be updated with the muscle conditions. Within the movement sessions, there was a distinct increase in the muscle activity levels for all subjects with the active mode in comparison to the EMG-triggered mode.

Originality/value

Both users’ movement intention and voluntary participation are considered, not only triggering the robot when people attempt to move but also changing the robot movement in accordance with user’s efforts. The impedance model here responds directly to velocity changes, and thus allows the exercise along a physiological trajectory. Moreover, the muscle activity level depends on both the normalized EMG signals and the weight coefficients of involved muscles.

Details

Industrial Robot: An International Journal, vol. 41 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-991X

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2016

Hong Qiao, Chuan Li, Peijie Yin, Wei Wu and Zhi-Yong Liu

Human movement system is a Multi-DOF, redundant, complex and nonlinear system formed by coordinating combination of neural system, bones, muscles and joints, which is…

Abstract

Purpose

Human movement system is a Multi-DOF, redundant, complex and nonlinear system formed by coordinating combination of neural system, bones, muscles and joints, which is robust and has fast response and learning ability. Imitating human movement system can improve robustness, fast response and learning ability of the robots.

Design/methodology/approach

In this paper, we propose a new motion model based on the human motion pathway, especially the information propagation mechanism between the cerebellum and spinal cord.

Findings

The proposed motion model proves to have fast response and learning ability through experiments, which matches the features of human motion.

Originality/value

The proposed model in this paper introduces the habitual theory in kinesiology and neuroscience into robot control, and improves robustness, fast response and learning ability of the robots. This paper proves that introduction of neuroscience has an important guiding significance for precise and adaptive robot control, such as assembly automation.

Details

Assembly Automation, vol. 36 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-5154

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 30 October 2020

Gaoxin Cheng, Linsen Xu, Jiajun Xu, Jinfu Liu, Jia Shi, Shouqi Chen, Lei Liu, Xingcan Liang and Yang Liu

This paper aims to develop a robotic mirror therapy system for lower limb rehabilitation, which is applicable for different patients with individual movement disability levels.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to develop a robotic mirror therapy system for lower limb rehabilitation, which is applicable for different patients with individual movement disability levels.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper puts forward a novel system that includes a four-degree-of-freedom sitting/lying lower limb rehabilitation robot and a wireless motion data acquisition system based on mirror therapy principle. The magnetorheological (MR) actuators are designed and manufactured, whose characteristics are detected theoretically and experimentally. The passive training control strategy is proposed, and the trajectory tracking experiments verify its feasibility. Also, the active training controller that is adapt to the human motor ability is designed and evaluated by the comparison experiments.

Findings

The MR actuators produce continuously variable and compliant torque for robotic joints by adjusting excitation current. The reference limb joint position data collected by the wireless motion data acquisition system can be used as the motion trajectory of the robot to drive the affected limb. The passive training strategy based on proportional-integral control proves to have great trajectory tracking performance through experiments. In the active training mode, by comparing the real-time parameters adjustment in two phases, it is certified that the proposed fuzzy-based regulated impedance controller can adjust assistance torque according to the motor ability of the affected limb.

Originality/value

The system developed in this paper fulfills the needs of robot-assisted mirror therapy for hemiplegic patients.

Details

Industrial Robot: the international journal of robotics research and application, vol. 48 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-991X

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Article
Publication date: 16 January 2017

Ye Chen and Zhelong Wang

Existing studies on human activity recognition using inertial sensors mainly discuss single activities. However, human activities are rather concurrent. A person could be…

Abstract

Purpose

Existing studies on human activity recognition using inertial sensors mainly discuss single activities. However, human activities are rather concurrent. A person could be walking while brushing their teeth or lying while making a call. The purpose of this paper is to explore an effective way to recognize concurrent activities.

Design/methodology/approach

Concurrent activities usually involve behaviors from different parts of the body, which are mainly dominated by the lower limbs and upper body. For this reason, a hierarchical method based on artificial neural networks (ANNs) is proposed to classify them. At the lower level, the state of the lower limbs to which a concurrent activity belongs is firstly recognized by means of one ANN using simple features. Then, the upper-level systems further distinguish between the upper limb movements and infer specific concurrent activity using features processed by the principle component analysis.

Findings

An experiment is conducted to collect realistic data from five sensor nodes placed on subjects’ wrist, arm, thigh, ankle and chest. Experimental results indicate that the proposed hierarchical method can distinguish between 14 concurrent activities with a high classification rate of 92.6 per cent, which significantly outperforms the single-level recognition method.

Practical implications

In the future, the research may play an important role in many ways such as daily behavior monitoring, smart assisted living, postoperative rehabilitation and eldercare support.

Originality/value

To provide more accurate information on people’s behaviors, human concurrent activities are discussed and effectively recognized by using a hierarchical method.

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Article
Publication date: 3 May 2011

Y. Mori, K. Maejima, K. Inoue, N. Shiroma and Y. Fukuoka

The purpose of this paper is to describe a standing style transfer system, ABLE, designed to enable a person with disabled lower limbs to do daily‐life activities without…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe a standing style transfer system, ABLE, designed to enable a person with disabled lower limbs to do daily‐life activities without special infrastructure. Actually, ABLE is mainly intended for use by people who have spinal cord injuries and who cannot move hip joints and lower extremities: the level of spinal cord injury is L1.

Design/methodology/approach

ABLE comprises three modules: a powered lower extremity orthosis, a pair of telescopic crutches, and a pair of mobile platforms. When traveling in a standing position, the user wears the powered lower extremity orthosis to fix his posture, and rides on the mobile platforms. The user uses crutches to keep his body stable. These telescopic crutches also play an important role of power assistance in standing‐up and sitting‐down motions, or going up/down a step. The user can enter narrow spaces, although stability is emphasized in wide spaces because it is possible to alter the contact points of the crutches freely.

Findings

Motions are discussed in a standing position: traveling and rotating, and the chair and step motions. Experimental results related to these motions confirm the design's effectiveness. The authors improve previously developed mobile platforms for better operationality and stability. An ultrasonic motor was used for steering the mobile platform instead of the prior DC motor. The benefits of the ultrasonic motor enable the new platform to reduce its backlash in steering. A supporting plate and an active ankle joint attached to each mobile platform contribute stability when traveling in the standing position. The authors show the experimental results using new mobile platforms.

Originality/value

The paper demonstrates novelty and originality of ABLE in its composition, which enables a person with disabled lower limbs to travel in a standing position on a pair of small mobile platforms. This system is regarded as a biped‐type leg‐wheeled robot system that has high energy efficiency and good mobility for steps because of its wheels and legs; moreover, it has a pair of crutches for stability.

Details

Industrial Robot: An International Journal, vol. 38 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-991X

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Article
Publication date: 25 August 2021

Qiang Cao, Jianfeng Li and Mingjie Dong

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate three categories of four-degrees of freedom (4-DOFs) upper limb rehabilitation exoskeleton mechanisms from the perspective of…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate three categories of four-degrees of freedom (4-DOFs) upper limb rehabilitation exoskeleton mechanisms from the perspective of relative movement offsets between the upper limb and the exoskeleton, so as to provide reference for the selection of exoskeleton mechanism configurations.

Design/methodology/approach

According to the configuration synthesis and optimum principles of 4-DOFs upper limb exoskeleton mechanisms, three categories of exoskeletons compatible with upper limb were proposed. From the perspective of human exoskeleton closed chain, through reasonable decomposition and kinematic characteristics analysis of passive connective joints, the kinematic equations of three categories exoskeletons were established and inverse position solution method were addressed. Subsequently, three indexes, which can represent the relative movement offsets of human–exoskeleton were defined.

Findings

Based on the presented position solution and evaluation indexes, the joint displacements and relative movement offsets of the three exoskeletons during eating movement were compared, on which the kinematic characteristics were investigated. The results indicated that the second category of exoskeleton was more suitable for upper limb rehabilitation than the other two categories.

Originality/value

This paper has a certain reference value for the selection of the 4-DOFs upper extremity rehabilitation exoskeleton mechanism configurations. The selected exoskeleton can ensure the safety and comfort of stroke patients with upper limb dyskinesia during rehabilitation training.

Details

Industrial Robot: the international journal of robotics research and application, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-991X

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Article
Publication date: 12 June 2019

Kaijun Cai, Weiming Zhang, Wenzhuo Chen and Hongfei Zhao

Based on virtual maintenance, this paper aims to propose a time prediction method of assembly and disassembly (A&D) actions of product maintenance process to enhance…

Abstract

Purpose

Based on virtual maintenance, this paper aims to propose a time prediction method of assembly and disassembly (A&D) actions of product maintenance process to enhance existing methods’ prediction accuracy, applicability and efficiency.

Design/methodology/approach

First, a framework of A&D time prediction model is constructed, which describes the time prediction process in detail. Then, basic maintenance motions which can comprise a whole A&D process are classified into five categories: body movement, working posture change, upper limb movement, operation and grasp/placement. A standard posture library is developed based on the classification. Next, according to motion characteristics, different time prediction methods for each motion category are proposed based on virtual maintenance simulation, modular arrangement of predetermined time standard theory and the statistics acquired from motion experiment. Finally, time correction based on the quantitative evaluation method of motion time influence factors is studied so that A&D time could be predicted with more accuracy.

Findings

Case study of time prediction of products’ various A&D processes is conducted by implementing the proposed method. The prediction process of diesel cooling fan disassemble time is presented in detail. Through comparison, the advantages and effectiveness of the method are demonstrated.

Originality/value

This paper proposes a more accurate, efficient and applicable product A&D time prediction method. It can help designers predict A&D time of a product maintenance accurately in early design phases without a physical prototype. It can also provide basis for the verification of maintainability, the balance of the design of product structure and system layout.

Details

Assembly Automation, vol. 39 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-5154

Keywords

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