Health / Robotics

Sensor Walk

Otto Bock HealthCare and Mayo Clinic

Weak legs can really hold a person back. Canes, crutches, braces, and wheelchairs don’t hold a candle to the biomechanical efficiency of two good wheels. So Kenton Kaufman, a Mayo Clinic researcher, invented a KAFO (knee-ankle-foot orthotic) that senses when weight is being applied, then locks in place at the knee to provide stability and support. In the absence of weight, the orthotic swings freely, allowing legs to do what legs do. Now the weak-legged get a chance to literally kick some butt.