What is an exoskeleton?
All thanks to artificial intelligence
You will admit that there are days when walking and running cause pain and discomfort. This happens, for example, when we are ill or when we reach an age where the aging process is gaining momentum. What if we found out about a device that could support natural forms of movement? It turns out that engineers from Harvard’s Wyss Institute managed to develop an exoskeleton that imitates running and walking. What does it look like and how does it work? It’s nothing more than a unique jumpsuit that looks like shorts. The researchers attached cords to them that lead to the straps on the legs. Through this coupling, the users of this invention have their natural human movements facilitated.
Harvard engineers equipped the discussed device with a computer with special software. Thanks to it, we can detect the movements of our body and give our invention a real chance to determine the type of movement we are making. What’s more, thanks to this software, we can indicate to the device the phase in which our limb is currently located. Thanks to this, we relieve our legs and make walking or running less strenuous. The product in question weighs around five kilograms, with most of that weight resting on the motor and the small battery. To make us feel more comfortable, scientists placed the exoskeleton around the middle of our body. Hence it is much lighter for us.
Based on the tests carried out, the engineers concluded that the mobility suit reduces energy loads. So far, these are not some dizzying results. In the case of walking in an exoskeleton, we reduce energy loss by about 10%, and in the case of running by about 4%. Although the above results are not yet fully satisfactory, even the American military became interested in the scientists’ project. A similar project was started by DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency). We translate the development of the English abbreviation as the Agency for Defense Advanced Research Projects. In addition, scientists predict that the exoskeleton will soon find its application in medicine. First, however, work is underway to reduce the weight of the device. Then it will be more efficient and will properly fulfill its task of relieving the load.