Design and tele-impedance control of a variable stiffness transradial hand prosthesis
Hocaoğlu, Elif (2014) Design and tele-impedance control of a variable stiffness transradial hand prosthesis. [Thesis]
According to theWorld Health Organization, only about the half of upper extremity amputees receive prosthetic limbs and only the half of this group consistently use their prosthetic limbs. The prominent reasons that hinder widespread adaptation of prosthetic devices are their high cost, non-intuitive control interface and insufficient dexterity for performing activities of daily living. This dissertation aims to address these challenges and presents the design, implementation, experimental characterization and human subject studies of a low cost, customizable, variable stiffness transradial hand prosthesis controlled through a natural human-machine interface. The transradial hand prosthesis features a low cost, robust, adaptive and lightweight design, thanks to its tendon-driven, under-actuated, compliant fingers and variable stiffness actuation. In particular, the underactuated compliant ngers feature high dexterity by naturally adapting to different object geometries and provide impact resistance. Antagonistically arranged Bowden-cable based variable stiffness actuation enables independent modulation of the impedance and position of the main tendon of prosthesis. Moreover, Bowden-cable based transmission allows for the actuator/ reduction/power module to be opportunistically placed remotely, away from the transradial hand prosthesis, helping significantly decrease the weight of the device. Furthermore, the transradial hand prosthesis, including the compliant fingers, can be implemented through simple and low-cost manufacturing processes, such as 3D printing, and each prosthesis can be customized to ensure an ideal fit to match the needs of the transradial amputee.
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