Work Sharing Device Assists with Lower Limb Mobility

  • Self-powered device provides upper-limb assisted mobility without an external power source
  • Creates external mechanical pathways to transfer upper limb motion or force to lower limb
  • Offers mobility to those affected by a lower limb impairment or disability

Abstract

The University of Central Florida invention is a Work-sharing of Upper Lower Limbs (WULL) device that creates external mechanical pathways to transfer upper limb joint motion or force to the lower limb joints. Mobility assistive devices, such as canes, crutches or walkers, are used to aid in the mobility of those affected by a lower limb impairment or disability. Although proven effective, the main shortcoming of these devices is the underutilization of lower limb muscles, which can decrease muscle mass and function of the lower limbs. Powered wearable devices for mobility assistance, such as exoskeletons or exosuits, have been developed and evolved over the past few decades; however, they are expensive, bulky, heavy, and power-demanding. This invention uses a new approach to assist lower limb motions using upper limb muscles, providing a self-regulated and self-powered means to assist lower limbs during ambulatory movements using upper limb muscles.

Stage of Development

Prototype available.

Website

https://ucf.flintbox.com/technologies/9D1F9B6963254B2AB2CEC5197A5B05DE

Advantages

  • Lightweight, self-regulated and self-powered
  • Helps to overcome the underutilization of lower limb muscles
  • Can be used to support walking, stair ascending/descending, and sit-to-stand

Potential Applications

  • Manufacturers of powered or unpowered ambulatory assistive devices

Contact Information

Name: Raju Nagaiah

Email: raju@ucf.edu

Phone: 407.882.0593