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research-article

Design and Evaluation of a Balance Assistance Control Moment Gyroscope

[+] Author and Article Information
Daniel Lemus

PhD Candidate, Department of Biomechanical Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Delft, The Netherlands
d.s.lemusperez@tudelft.nl

Jan van Frankenhuyzen

Bio-robotics Laboratory, Department of Biomechanical Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Delft, The Netherlands
j.vanfrankenhuyzen@tudelft.nl

Heike Vallery

Associate Professor, Department of Biomechanical Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Delft, The Netherlands
h.vallery@tudelft.nl

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4037255 History: Received January 23, 2017; Revised June 03, 2017

Abstract

Fall-related injuries are among the most serious and common medical problems in aging societies. However, existing wearable robotic devices do not primarily target balance, but rather other subtasks of locomotion. Particularly support for weight bearing requires bulky and heavy exoskeletons, which are impractical in daily life. We recently proposed the theoretical idea of a wearable balancing aid, consisting of a set of Control Moment Gyroscopes (CMGs) contained into a backpack-like orthopedic corset. In this paper, we describe the design and evaluation of a a hardware test setup, consisting of a single Control Moment Gyroscope mounted to an inverted pendulum. The design considers aerodynamic characteristics of the flywheel as well as dynamic effects of the wearer's motion on the CMG. The developed system was capable of tracking a gyroscopic moment up to 70 Nm with a total CMG mass of about 10 kg. Moreover, the system was capable of emulating several virtual stiffnesses while keeping the pendulum balanced.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
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