Friday, January 13, 2012

Espresso Chat: Using Rotary Motion to Study Human Movement

In an age of info overload, sometimes all you need is a quick jolt of facts, not a forever-long white paper or data sheet. That's the idea behind our new feature: Espresso Chats. We'll pick a topic, give you a simple rundown and have you on your way, re-energized with new knowledge. Best enjoyed with a dash of curiosity. Enjoy!

Credit: Mikrolar
WALKING THE WALK: What shoe designs can prevent ankle injuries? Why do hurt joints often develop osteoarthritis? And why do diabetics develop tissue ailments? To answer those questions — and to better understand the way our feet work — researchers at a handful of universities are using a rotary hexapod to simulate human gait. Geek out! Setting some of these in motion is our HepcoMotion [ PRT rings ] — a precision ring and track product line.

Learning more about the dynamics of walking can teach us how to treat joint trauma, prevent gradual wear on tear on our ligaments and offer some insight into the origins of joint disease. These robotic devices allow researchers to realistically recreate human gait using a prosthetic limb, sometimes even a cadaver limb. The fast, precise rotary motion solution and six-point linkage system allow the robots to run smooth and steady while copying the movement of different joints. Feels good to know that our products play a part in deepening our understanding of science!

Photo credit: Mikrolar

[ Click here to read more ] about how these rotary hexapods are used to study the musculo- and skeletal health of the human leg. [ And, follow this link ] to read some academic papers based on this biomedical research.