Researchers develop wearable robotic exomuscle system

Marie Georgarakis demonstrates her Myoshirt exomuscle device. [Photo by Florian Haufe for ETH Zurich]ETH Zurich researchers have redefined the muscle shirt.

Marie Georgarakis, a former doctoral student at ETH Zurich’s Sensory Motor Systems Lab, is the creator of the Myoshirt, a wearable, textile robotic device that helps users lift their arms and reach. A motorized cable works like an artificial tendon, directed by sensors and an algorithm to support the wearer’s intended movement.

ETH Zurich researchers recently tested Myoshirt on a dozen people — one person with muscular dystrophy, another with a spinal cord injury and ten people without physical impairment — and all reported longer endurance when lifting their arms.

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Researchers develop wearable robotic exomuscle system

Marie Georgarakis demonstrates her Myoshirt exomuscle device. [Photo by Florian Haufe for ETH Zurich]

ETH Zurich researchers have redefined the muscle shirt.

Marie Georgarakis, a former doctoral student at ETH Zurich’s Sensory Motor Systems Lab, is the creator of the Myoshirt, a wearable, textile robotic device that helps users lift their arms and reach. A motorized cable works like an artificial tendon, directed by sensors and an algorithm to support the wearer’s intended movement.

ETH Zurich researchers recently tested Myoshirt on a dozen people — one person with muscular dystrophy, another with a spinal cord injury and ten people without physical impairment — and all reported longer endurance when lifting their arms.

The Myoshirt exomuscle device’s cable acts like a tendon. [Photo by Florian Haufe for ETH Zurich]

MyoshirtR…
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This variable stiffness catheter could simplify cardiac procedures

Image courtesy of EPFL

Researchers in Switzerland have developed a variable stiffness catheter that can transition between soft and rigid states.

A team of researchers from technical university EPFL and ETH Zurich developed the catheter to make minimally invasive surgical interventions like cardiac arrhythmia treatment, simpler and more effective.

Catheters are inserted into arteries and navigated to treatment zones in many minimally invasive procedures. They can provide access to the heart without having to perform open-heart surgery. However, catheters can come with limitations.

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Neurofeedback could help prostheses feel lighter: Here’s how

Prosthesis with neurofeedback sensors [Image from ETH Zurich]

Researchers at ETH Zurich have developed a prosthesis system that connects to the body’s nervous system to help amputees perceive a prosthetic weight as lower.

The prosthesis system provides feedback to the wearer using electrodes implanted in the thigh that are connected to the leg nerves. Information from the tactile sensors under the sole of the prosthetic foot and angle sensors in the electronic prosthetic knee joint are then converted into pulses of current and passed into the nerves, according to the researchers.

“To trick an above-knee amputee’s brain into the belief that the prosthetic leg was similar to his own leg, we artificially restored the lost sensory feedback,” lead researcher Stanisa Raspopovic said in a news release.

The researchers suggest that wearers of neurofeedback prostheses can move more …

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