A Soft+Rigid Hybrid Exoskeleton Concept in Scissors-Pendulum Mode: A Suit for Human State Sensing and an Exoskeleton for Assistance

2019 IEEE 16th International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics (ICORR)(2019)

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In this paper, we present a novel concept that can enable the human aware control of exoskeletons through the integration of a soft suit and a robotic exoskeleton. Unlike the state-of-the-art exoskeleton controllers which mostly rely on lumped human-robot models, the proposed concept makes use of the independent state measurements concerning the human user and the robot. The ability to observe the human state independently is the key factor in this approach. In order to realize such a system from the hardware point of view, we propose a system integration frame that combines a soft suit for human state measurement and a rigid exoskeleton for human assistance. We identify the technological requirements that are necessary for the realization of such a system with a particular emphasis on soft suit integration. We also propose a template model, named scissor pendulum, that may encapsulate the dominant dynamics of the human-robot combined model to synthesize a controller for human state regulation. A series of simulation experiments were conducted to check the controller performance. As a result, satisfactory human state regulation was attained, adequately confirming that the proposed system could potentially improve exoskeleton-aided applications.
Exoskeleton Device,Humans,Lower Extremity,Postural Balance,Self-Help Devices,Wearable Electronic Devices
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