Figure 1. Design and working concept of the Stretchable microNeedle Adhesive Patch (SNAP). (A) Schematic illustration showing the overall system configuration and application of SNAP. (B) Exploded view schematic diagram of a SNAP, consisting of stretchable serpentine interconnects, Au-coated Si microneedle, and ECA made of Ag flakes–silicone composite. (C) Optical images showing high mechanical compliance of SNAP. [Courtesy of KIST]
Figure 2. Demonstration of the wireless Stretchable microNeedle Adhesive Patch (SNAP) system as an Human-machine interfaces (HMI) for closed-loop control of an exoskeleton robot. (A) Illustration depicting the system architecture and control strategy of an exoskeleton robot. (B) The hardware configuration of the pneumatic back support exoskeleton system. (C) Comparison of root mean square (RMS) of electromyography (EMG) with and without robotic assistance of pretreated skin and non-pretreated skin.
A project to commercialize wearable robots designed to assist the elderly in activities such as hiking and golf, particularly for those who find walking difficult or face challenging terrains in South Korea, is currently underway.
On Monday, the Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) announced it began a technology transfer to machinery and equipment firm Samick THK for the commercial development of an artificial intelligence (AI)-based wearable exoskeleton that provides strength assistance for joints.
The institute’s wearable exoskeleton robot is equipped with AI capable of real-time analysis of the wearer’s walking conditions. This enables personalized strength assistance for walking in various environments, including stairs, flat surfaces, and slopes.
The research team conducted experiments, verifying the performance and reliability of the device by having a 65-year-old participant wear the exoskeleton while hiking the 604-meter summit of Mount Bukhansan.
Samick THK will conduct collaborative research with KIST over the next two years.
By Ko Jae-won and Minu Kim
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