Technology has been advanced from swords to bows and arrows through the
discovery of riffles and the invention of the aircraft and now to the presence
of unmanned laser guided aerial drones and various robots. The military is now
hoping for the new class of warrior –Exoskeleton envisions dreams to come into
reality and procreates dismounted soldiers into a faster robust and empowered
exoskeleton suits such as “iron man”.
are external skeleton structures that are used to protect animal’s body. Military
Exoskeletons or exo-suits have been in development since early 1960’s, often
known as wearable robotics for military designed to boost soldier’s strength
and endurance. These are devices which are put on a human and are intended for
humans’ augmentation in particular to increase the efforts that a person may apply.
help soldiers to carry heavy loads both in and out of combat, run at faster
speeds and defend themselves from enemy attacks. These systems are anthromorphic (ascribing human characteristics to nonhuman things) devices that work in conjunction with our body’s
natural architecture. There are several factors driving the demand for these
exoskeletons globally. The most basic
exoskeleton is more or less a pair of legs taking the weight of an equipment
human universal load carrier (HULC) ,etc.,
have demonstrated greatly improved strength, allowing soldier to
carry loads of up to 200lbs for extended periods of time. But they are
hydraulic-powered, anthropomorphic exoskeleton designed specifically to fit
around the body of a dismounted soldier. There is no control mechanism, instead sensors detect
movement and, using a micro-computer, make the suit to move in time with the
Robotic exoskeletons are
used for various purposes in different sizes. Exoskeletons can be classified
into full body, upper extremity (torso and hands) and lower extremity (for
legs) exoskeletons. One big problem was that these initial exoskeletons forced
wearers to walk in an unfamiliar way. This difficulty was compounded by a lack
of coordination between human and machine. A wearable exoskeleton solution is
to be conceived to aid the soldier and enhance his capabilities.
We propose a further
invention involved in eliminating the main reason of former failures through
the uses of different approaches. Latest exoskeletons has been developed to
reduce the weight that impact on the wearer and also various exo-frames were
introduced in both military and medical fields for rehabilitation purposes such
as restoring lost limb functions.
Our Exoskeleton is specifically designed for
soldiers and acts as coalescence of technologies. We have proposed an exoskeleton
which helps to carry load without causing an effect for wearer. Former powered
exoskeletons uses some mechanical movement as a single power source and
batteries or fuel cells as power storage which acted as a main reason for
weight of the exoskeleton.
Our exo suit consists of distributed power sources
of three types:
(1) Power generated from backpack movement.
generated from the wearers knee and
generated from the wearers shoe.
These sources produce power enough to allow the
exoskeleton produce the wearer strength and endurance to move along with a load
of approximated weight. Light weight actuators have been used to create more
compact design with better characteristics.
The main reason behind
exoskeleton development is the augmentation of the physical abilities of a
human being, specifically strength and endurance for the current state of the
art. Human walking carries a lot of energy, although this has been realized by
many current robotic devices, producing better rehabilitation outcomes with robotic
devices is still a developing area of research.
To design better robotic devices, it is
important to understand:
principles governing how humans learn to interact with the robotic assistance and
to identify the gait parameters humans prioritize as objectives for their gait pattern.
Considering the above, the kinematic
relationship has been understood to be robust both in forward and backward locomotion
and its nature is not altered by perturbing gait patterns and changing gait speed.
In order to apply human biomechanical
data to design guidance for an exoskeleton, six assumptions were made:
1.The size, mass, and inertial
properties of the exoskeleton will be equivalent to
those of a human.
2. The exoskeleton will carry itself
(including power supply) and the soldier’s load.
3. The joint torques and joint powers
scale linearly with mass.
4. The exoskeleton’s gait will be the
same as a human’s gait.
5. The exoskeleton will carry a load on
its back in the same way those humans carry loads on
6. The exoskeleton will move at the same
speed, cover the same distance, and carry the same load as a soldier who does
not have an exoskeleton.
exoskeleton development has largely been part of major research
Endeavors and has yielded solutions exhibiting high inertia
limbs which are burdensome to the wearer. Now let us have a study on the principal
behind our proposal.
POWER GENERATION FROM BACKPACK MOVEMENT:
When we walk, we
naturally optimize coordination patterns for energy efficiency. In order to
achieve maximum optimization, we have designed a fully portable hip-assistance
exosuit that uses a backpack frame to attach to the torso, onto which is
mounted a spooled-webbing actuator that connects to the back of the users
thigh. The actuators, powered by a geared brushless motor connected to a spool
via a timing belt, wind up seat-belt webbing onto the spool so that a large
travel is possible with a simple, compact mechanism.
The linkages were
attached to the back frame and were located on either side of the body. They
acted as a first class lever with the pivot at the center.The load and the
actuating force were on either ends of the link. The lengths of the links and
the forces acting on them can be calculated.The law of moments was applied to obtain
the force that the actuator must provide in order to lift the weight.
The back frame consists of
two vertical structures with two cross links in order to set them apart. L
links projecting backwards were used to attach the actuator.They were welded to
the back frame.The actuators were fixed rigidly at the end to the back frame.
Hence the stress induced in the L link and the strength of the welds must to be
The material used was
cold rolled steel. The axial stress, maximum normal stress were calculated for
each link and they were within the yield strength of the material chosen. As
shown in the figure a load is attached to a load plate which is placed on the L
links. Due to the walking movement of the wearer, a force is applied on the
linear actuators placed on the hip section which makes the spring attached to
the back frame move which instead provides vertical movement to the load plate.
This in turn generate power which is stored in the battery situated beneath the
L linkages. The power stored in the battery used by the exoskeleton for the
GENERATED FROM KNEE
Scientists have proved
that every movement we do with our legs generate some amount of force which in
turn can be used to charge some devices. Power can be generated from these ankle
movements. This power generated can be collected and stored in a battery.Every time that you take a step, your
leg both accelerates and decelerates. For a walking movement, due to swinging
action a braking action happens at the knee joint. And it is this braking
mechanism generates energy, a generator that was able to absorb that
wasted energy and turn it into electricity is designed.
We have analyzed two
types of robotic exoskeletons movements to examine rapid locomotors adaptation
to mechanical assistance.
Power absorption at heel strike
Power generation at toe-off.
In other words, the tibialis
anterior has two main bursts of activity during gait:
One at heel strike to slowly lower
the foot to the ground and
One at toe-off to help provide toe clearance
former provides mechanical power absorption at the ankle joint and
the latter provides mechanical power generation at the ankle joint.
The proposed controller captures the user’s intent to
generate task-related assistive torques by means of the exoskeleton in
different phases of the subject’s normal activity. Three dominant antagonistic
muscle pairs are used in our model, in which electromyography (EMG) signals (technique
for evaluating and recording the electrical activity produced by skeletal
muscles)are acquired, processed and used for the estimation of the
time. In addition, experiments can be conducted of standing-up and sitting-down
tasks are demonstrated to further investigate the capabilities of the
controller. Knee exoskeleton, can effectively generate assistive actions that
are volitionally and intuitively controlled by the user’s muscle activity.
POWER GENERATION THROUGH SHOE
materials generate electricity when pressure is applied to it. A piezoelectric
generator in the sole of a shoe could produce electricity with every step .This
regenerative footstep is based on the principle of piezoelectric effect in
which pressure or strain applied to the piezoelectric material placed in the
insole of the wearers shoe is converted into electricity. The generated
power can be used to power the exoskeleton. Generation of electrical
polarization of the material of the shoe in response to the mechanical strain
is practiced here.
Walking With Loads
In 2000, Harman, Hoon, Frykman, and Pandorf reported
about the effects of load carriage onlower extremity biomechanics during
walking. Joint angle data were collected and joint momentswere calculated for
carried backpack loads of 6, 20, 33, and 47 kg while subjects walked at aspeed
of approximately 1.33 m/s. In contrast tochange in walking speed, the instant
when toe-off occurs in the gait cycle was affected by changein carried load. As
carried load increased from 6 to 47 kg, the duration of the stance phase wasobserved
to increase from approximately 63.4% to 65.2% of the gait cycle. Timing of
transitionsfrom flexion to extension and extension to flexion also appears to
be affected by change incarried load. The effect of change in carried load on
hip joint angles was not reported, but slightchanges in knee and ankle joint
angles were. Peak knee flexion during mid-stance (? 10% to30% gait cycle)
was found to increase from approximately 22.5 to 27.5 degrees, while peak kneeflexion
at the transition from initial to mid-swing (? 72% gait cycle) was found
to decrease fromapproximately 68 to 64 degrees with an increase in carried
load. At the ankle, peak dorsiflexionduring terminal stance (? 30% to 50%
gait cycle) was found to decrease from approximately11.5 to 10 degrees, and
peak plantarflexion at the transition from mid- to terminal swing (? 90%gait
cycle) was found to decrease from approximately 5 to 3.5 degrees with an
increase in carriedload. As with the joint angles, timing of transitions from
extensor to flexor and flexor to extensormoments, as well as peak values
obtained at each joint, appears to be affected by change incarried load. At the
hip, peak extensor moment values during loading response, as well as peakflexor
moment values during terminal stance, were found to increase with an increase
in carried load. Peak knee extensor moment values during mid-stance and peak
ankle plantarflexor moment values during terminal stance were also found to
increase with an increase in carried load, while peak knee flexor and ankle
dorsiflexor moments did not follow a monotonically increasing trend.
peak extensor and flexor moment values obtained at each joint under each of the
backpack loads are summarized in Table .
As an advancement of sole
power generator we have attached a additional feature for our exoskeleton. The
insole of this made up of a conductive material and has a planar coil printed
in the form of ultra thin layer. This insole consists of an ultra thin microprocessor.
This mine detection works on the principle of metal detector. These metal
detectors consist of inductor coil which is used to interact with the mine
inside the ground. This insole produces electromagnetic frequency waves and
detects the mine within 6.5ft (2m). When the electromagnetic field is disrupted as there is a mine in the ground it the radio
transmitter transmits signal to the wristwatch and produces an alarm signal
to the watch cinched on the wearer’s wrist and thus the location of the mine is
manifested on the watch screen
The ability to assist humans through an exoskeleton is what researchers
have been thriving for. Many different exoskeletons for various body parts have
been developed to try and assist human movements efficiently. This research
proposes the development of a power generating exoskeleton to assist the human
through ambulation while carrying a substantial payload. Even though
Exoskeletons are been into existence for more than a 5 decades, they are still
facing many challenges related to power supply, weight, battery existence etc.
These Limitations have been tried to overcome in this proposal. We being the budding
engineers , have come up with a solution to solve some exiting problems faced
by former exo skeletons to assist our troops in war field.