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Title: User and Environmental Context Adaptive Knee Exoskeleton Assistance using Electromyography
Proportional myoelectric controller (PMC) has been one of the most common assistance strategies for robotic exoskeletons due to its ability to modulate assistance level directly based on the user's muscle activation. However, existing PMC strategies (static or user-adaptive) scale torque linearly with muscle activation level and fail to address complex and non-linear mapping between muscle activation and joint torque. Furthermore, previously presented adaptive PMC strategies do not allow for environmental changes (such as changes in ground slopes) and modulate the system's assistance level over many steps. In this work, we designed a novel user- and environment-adaptive PMC for a knee exoskeleton that modulates the peak assistance level based on the slope level during locomotion. We recruited nine able-bodied adults to test and compare the effects of three different PMC strategies (static, user-adaptive, and user- and environment-adaptive) on the user's metabolic cost and the knee extensor muscle activation level during load-carriage walking (6.8 kg) in three inclination settings (0°, 4.5°, and 8.5°). The results showed that only the user- and environment-adaptive PMC was effective in significantly reducing user's metabolic cost (5.8% reduction) and the knee extensor muscle activation (19% reduction) during 8.5° incline walking compared to the unpowered condition while other PMCs did not have as large of an effect. This control framework highlights the viability of implementing an assistance paradigm that can dynamically adjust to the user's biological demand, allowing for a more personalized assistance paradigm.  more » « less
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Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ;
Publisher / Repository:
IEEE 2023 International Symposium on Medical Robotics (ISMR)
Date Published:
Page Range / eLocation ID:
1 to 6
Medium: X
Atlanta, GA, USA
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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