Samsung Files a patent for wearable robot that uses comparatively less sensors to assist a wearer in walking.
One of the biggest tease of Avenger: Age of Ultron was the public fight between Hulk and Tony Stark where Tony Stark was wearing his “Hulkbuster” exoskeleton suit. The suit seems specially designed to take down the strong Hulk when he goes berserk.
The use of power exoskeleton is not a new concept and has been long fantasized by Hollywood since 1967 from Dean Martin’s Ambusher. In 1967, it was a pure Sci-fi. However, in recent time we have witnessed yesterday’s sci-fi becoming today’s technology.
Power exoskeleton aka wearable robotic suit, is among one such sci-fi of past that has slowly become today’s technology. Robotic suits by Ekso Bionic are already there in the market and Sony is also working on one such suit.
A recent patent application by Samsung hints that the Korean tech giant also wants to venture out into the domain with a wearable robotic suit that has fewer sensors. Use of fewer sensors will make their suit lightweight.
The wearable robotic suits of Samsung will assist elderly in walking those have lost their muscular power to the aging. Below we have provided a succinct detail of the patent application. You can read the full patent from here.
How Wearable Robotic Suit by Samsung Works?
The wearable robotic suit has two EMG sensors placed at tibialis anterior and other at the triceps surae (see images) muscle of wearer’s leg. These EMG sensors detect muscle movement.
Apart from EMG sensors, one embodiment of patent mentions the use of gyro and acceleration sensors. The gyro sensor detects inclination of the wearer’s upper body while the acceleration sensor detects his walking acceleration.
The controller of the suit gathers sensory data to calculate a value of torque proportional to the inclination and walking speed of the wearer.
In next step, the controller guides the motor that is attached at the hip joints to apply a torque in such a manner that it assists a wearer in walking by increasing his muscular power.
One point worth noting is that the robotic suit doesn’t send walking power to the muscles continuously; but, sends it for a particular duration known as walking assist duration.
The patent defines walking assist duration as the time when the wearer’s leg offs the ground and touches it again.
Samsung, also working on surgical robots which can revolutionize future medical industry. Click here to read about future surgical robots by Samsung.