ICRA 2011 Paper Abstract


Paper TuP108.4

Grimmer, Martin (University of Jena), Seyfarth, Andre (University of Jena)

Stiffness Adjustment of a Series Elastic Actuator in an Ankle-Foot Prosthesis for Walking and Running: The Trade-Off between Energy and Peak Power Optimization

Scheduled for presentation during the Regular Sessions "Rehabilitation Robotics I" (TuP108), Tuesday, May 10, 2011, 14:25−14:40, Room 5C

2011 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, May 9-13, 2011, Shanghai International Conference Center, Shanghai, China

This information is tentative and subject to change. Compiled on March 30, 2020

Keywords Rehabilitation Robotics, Compliant Joint/Mechanism, Medical Robots and Systems


During walking and running, passive foot prostheses can only do positive work by releasing elastic energy stored in compliant structures. This limited ability to generate positive work can be improved in devices which actively support the push-off. Here, we estimate the peak power and energy requirements of a simulated serial elastic actuator (SEA) for walking and running and compare it with a direct drive setup. The simulations indicate that a serial spring can highly reduce peak power and the energy. Results suggest that optimizing SEA stiffness to obtain minimal peak power is the more general approach as it needs similar energy requirements as observed in optimizing for minimal energy. In contrast, optimization for minimal energy results in clearly higher peak power requirements. For both gaits, the predicted optimal spring stiffness suitable for minimizing peak power increases with speed. For optimizing energy, the stiffness decreases with walking speed and remains nearly constant across speeds in running. A constant stiffness for both gaits is possible. It should be chosen based on the optimized peak power solution for the highest desired speed, where the peak power requirements are most critical.



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