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Title: Wearable exoskeleton systems based-on pneumatic soft actuators and controlled by parallel processing
Author: Al-Fahaam, H. S. H.
ISNI:       0000 0004 7971 9607
Awarding Body: University of Salford
Current Institution: University of Salford
Date of Award: 2019
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Human assistance innovation is essential in an increasingly aging society and one technology that may be applicable is exoskeletons. However, traditional rigid exoskeletons have many drawbacks. This research includes the design and implementation of upper-limb power assist and rehabilitation exoskeletons based on pneumatic soft actuators. A novel extensor-contractor pneumatic muscle has been designed and constructed. This new actuator has bidirectional action, allowing it to both extend and contract, as well as create force in both directions. A mathematical model has been developed for the new novel actuator which depicts the output force of the actuator. Another new design has been used to create a novel bending pneumatic muscle, based on an extending McKibben muscle and modelled mathematically according to its geometric parameters. This novel bending muscle design has been used to create two versions of power augmentation gloves. These exoskeletons are controlled by adaptive controllers using human intention. For finger rehabilitation a glove has been developed to bend the fingers (full bending) by using our novel bending muscles. Inspired by the zero position (straight fingers) problem for post-stroke patients, a new controllable stiffness bending actuator has been developed with a novel prototype. To control this new rehabilitation exoskeleton, online and offline controller systems have been designed for the hand exoskeleton and the results have been assessed experimentally. Another new design of variable stiffness actuator, which controls the bending segment, has been developed to create a new version of hand exoskeletons in order to achieve more rehabilitation movements in the same single glove. For Forearm rehabilitation, a rehabilitation exoskeleton has been developed for pronation and supination movements by using the novel extensor-contractor pneumatic muscle. For the Elbow rehabilitation an elbow rehabilitation exoskeleton was designed which relies on novel two-directional bending actuators with online and offline feedback controllers. Lastly for upper-limb joint is the wrist, we designed a novel all-directional bending actuator by using the moulding bladder to develop the wrist rehabilitation exoskeleton by a single all-directional bending muscle. Finally, a totally portable, power assistive and rehabilitative prototype has been developed using a parallel processing intelligent control chip.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available