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Title page for ETD etd-08192015-082043

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Young, Eric Michael
Author's Email Address ericyoung2011@gmail.com
URN etd-08192015-082043
Title Low-Cost, Intention-Detecting Robot to Assist the Movement of an Impaired Upper Limb
Degree Master of Science
Department Mechanical Engineering
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Nilanjan Sarkar Committee Chair
Thomas Withrow Committee Member
Zachary Warren Committee Member
  • human-robot interaction
  • intention detection
  • robotic assistance
Date of Defense 2015-08-14
Availability unrestricted
In recent years, robotic rehabilitation has proven to be beneficial for individuals with impaired limbs, particularly due to the potential of robotic therapists to be more accessible, consistent and cost-effective than their human counterparts. While pursuing better rehabilitation methods is a crucial endeavor, it is also important to acknowledge that many people need an alternative form of assistance for physical impairments, both while undergoing rehabilitation and in the unfortunate but common scenario of rehabilitation providing insufficient improvements. The aim of this thesis is to present a low-cost robotic assistive device which may serve as a complement to rehabilitation procedures. The proposed system determines the intended movement of a user’s upper arm via eye-gaze inputs and force inputs, and physically assists said movement. In this manner, the system may provide immediate relief for someone suffering from physical impairments in their upper limbs, either as a complement to ongoing rehabilitation therapy or as a partial solution in the case of insufficient improvements from rehabilitation.
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