Researchers Introduce the First DARPA Limb PrototypeBy Rehab Management: Rehab Today,
Publication Date: May 2007
Article focuses on the design and development of the Proto 1, which is a fully integrated prosthetic arm designed by a research team from the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland. The Proto 1 can be controlled naturally; can provide sensory feedback, and allows for eight degrees of freedom. The prosthesis was developed for the DARPA Revolutionizing Prosthetics Program, which is a complete limb system that includes a virtual environment used for client training, clinical configuration, and to record limb movements and controls signals during investigations. The integrated sensory feedback and natural control featured in Proto 1 is made possible by Targeting Muscle Reinnervation, which is a technique developed at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. The technique involves the transfer or residual nerves from an amputated limb to unused muscle regions close to the injury. One client had used the system at the time the article was written, and he was able to reposition his thumb for different grips, remove a credit card from his pocket, stack cups while controlling his grip force using sensory feedback as opposed to vision, and to walk with a more natural gait. Implications for a second prototype design are discussed.
Published by: Ascend Media LLC (Website:http://www.ascendmedia.com)
Link to text: http://www.rehabpub.com/RMN/2007-05-14_02.asp