Robotics @ Lunchtime

Customizable Soft Pneumatic Gripper Devices
Low Jin Huat, Master Student
Department of Mechanical Engineering

Game Medicine in Rehabilitation
Ms. Chua Cai Lin, Final Year Undergraduate Student
Department of Biomedical Engineering

Soft Ankle-Foot Exoskeleton for Alternative Mechanical Prophylaxis of Deep Vein Thrombosis
Low Fanzhe, PhD Student
Department of Biomedical Engineering

Please register your attendance at the following link by 7 April 2015:

http://goo.gl/fWpJVP

Customizable Soft Pneumatic Gripper Devices
Low Jin Huat, Master Student
Department of Mechanical Engineering

Soft robotics have garnered great research interests from the robotics community, particularly in areas of application where complex and costly hard robots are unsuitable, due to their many fascinating properties, such as lightweight, low component costs, high customizability, easy fabrication with 3D printing technique, and capability in producing complex motions based on simple designs of pneumatic channels and sources (i.e. air or fluid). The purpose of this research is to develop soft pneumatic gripper devices that could lead to advances in medical applications, ranging from the handling of delicate soft tissues during surgery to hand orthotics and prosthetics, by providing: (a) compliant gripping without introducing excessive stress to the object, (b) simple control (e.g. fluid pressurization) and fabrication technique that is low cost and highly scalable for mass production, (c) safe human-robot interactions based on the soft materials used for fabrication, and (d) high customizability to suit different requirements. I will present on the applications of soft robotics to the areas of prosthetics, surgical tools, and therapeutic insoles in this talk.

Game Medicine in Rehabilitation
Ms. Chua Cai Lin, Final Year Undergraduate Student
Department of Biomedical Engineering

Physical rehabilitation is a crucial process for several patient groups, such as stroke survivors and breast cancer patients, to regain their muscle strength and ranges of motion so that they would be able to carry out activities of daily living independently. For stroke patients whose rehabilitation also focuses on motor relearning, their rehabilitation process involves intensive and repetitive exercises. Unfortunately, most stroke survivors have low motivation due to the mundane nature of the repetitive exercises. Hence, serious games for rehabilitation look into the use of video games to keep the patients motivated during their rehabilitation sessions. In my FYP, the kinematics of healthy subjects playing a video game with a Kinect-based game system was analyzed. In this talk, I will share about the main conclusions of the research, and the future potential of such Kinect-based rehabilitation game systems.

Soft Ankle-Foot Exoskeleton for Alternative Mechanical Prophylaxis of Deep Vein Thrombosis
Low Fanzhe, PhD Student
Department of Biomedical Engineering

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a serious medical condition that can affect patients who are long-term bed-ridden, due to diseases such as stroke. Current prevention methods for DVT focus on either pharmacological prophylaxis or mechanical prophylaxis. Furthermore, current mechanical prophylaxis systems that target prevention of DVT have limited success rates as patients are still susceptible to occurrences of DVT even with long-term usage of such systems. We will present an innovative mechanical system of a soft robotic exosock using soft pneumatic actuators to assist in ankle exercises for the prevention of DVT. The exosock was able to provide assisted ankle plantarflexion-dorsiflexion to the subjects using a push-pull mechanism. Furthermore, we will also present an interactive graphic user interface for interaction between physicians and patients during the rehabilitation session which is also able to provide real-time feedback of the ankle joint angle.