Powered Lower-Limb Prostheses

A Robotic Prosthesis for Transtibial Amputees

Prosthetic interventions for transtibial, or below-knee, amputees are most commonly passive. However, these individuals have been shown to require up to 20% more oxygen during walking than individuals with intact joints. Additionally, a fully passive device cannot adapt to changes in terrain, speed, and gait. Therefore, as the requisite technology has become sufficiently advancesd, powered ankles have begun to emerge which address some of these concerns.

We have shown preliminary results that suggest that a powered ankle prosthesis can enhance mobility for transtibial amputees, not only by more closely restoring biomechanically healthy gait during locomotion but also by adding functionality which passive devices cannot provide.

We have implemented variable cadence walking and ground adaptive standing controllers (along with the ability to naturally transition between the two) on the device pictured on the right. In addition, we are currently investigating a controller for walking on variable terrain.

 

prosthetic leg

Media

 
Activities of Daily Living

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Activities of Daily Living

Powered Ankle Prosthesis

 

This video demonstrates some of the functionality in the Generation 3.1 powered ankle prosthesis. A transtibial amputee test subject demonstrates variable cadence walking and ground adaptive standing and sitting.

 

Treadmill Walking: Powered versus Passive Prosthesis

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Treadmill Walking:

Powered versus Passive Prosthesis

 

This video highlights the powered push-off provided by the powered ankle prosthesis.

 

Variable Cadence Walking on Treadmill

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Variable Cadence Walking on Treadmill

 

This video demostrates the variable cadence feature provided by the powered ankle prosthesis.

 

Standing on Slopes: Powered versus Passive Prosthesis

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Standing on Slopes

Powered versus Passive Prosthesis

 

This video highlights the ability of the prosthesis to adapt to and provide support on surfaces of varying slopes and demstrates the importance of this functionality by comparing to a passive ankle prosthesis.

Publications

  • Walking on Uneven Terrain with a Powered Ankle Prosthesis, A. H. Shultz, B. E. Lawson, and M. Goldfarb, IEEE International Conference of Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, August 2015, Pending Publication.

  • A Walking Controller for a Powered Ankle Prosthesis, A. H. Shultz, J. E. Mitchell, D. Truex, B. E. Lawson, E. Ledoux, and M. Goldfarb, IEEE International Conference of Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, August 2014, pp. 6203-6206. IEEE Xplore

  • Preliminary Evaluation of a Walking Controller for a Powered Ankle Prosthesis, A. H. Shultz, J. E. Mitchell, D. Truex, B. E. Lawson, and M. Goldfarb, IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, pp. 4838-4843, May 2013. IEEE Xplore