Vrije Universiteit Brussel
The medical industry is moving in a direction towards robotics to help patients in the rehabilitation process. Gait training (over ground or on a treadmill) has become an essential part of rehabilitation therapy in patients suffering from gait impairment caused by disorders such as stroke, spinal cord injury, and multiple sclerosis. A focus on the human in collaboration with a robot puts emphasis on the adaptability, safety, and task specificity of robotic assistance. Hence, in the development of novel rehabilitation prototypes engineers face the challenge of combining suitable design concepts, high performance actuator technologies, and dedicated control strategies in view of improved physical human-robot interaction (HRI). The improvements should lead to a better insight into effectiveness of robot-assisted rehabilitation and ultimately, lead to therapies that are more effective. One of the approaches to facilitate the design process, in terms of development time, functional and safety evaluation, is using computational multibody simulations. Nowadays, multibody modeling and simulations are recognizable as an efficient and relative inexpensive evaluation approach. Due to the continuously increasing complexity of the wearable robots, almost any study conducted in the field of robotics can profit from a simulation of the system behavior, foregoing experiments on a real platform. Moreover, an advantage of using multibody modeling represented by the possibility to predict various outputs that are difficult, dangerous, or even impossible to reproduce in the real experimental setup.
The 3D model of a novel CORBYS
rehabilitation device has been developed
and co-simulated with the human
body using object-oriented multibody
dynamics software, Adams.