Jaswin Hargun: Paralyzed Limb Solutions

Creating a convenient and affordable device to restore mobility

My goal is to create an exoskeleton that encompasses the arm and uses motors to move. The main purpose is to restore movement for those with paralysis. Certain common tasks will be automated, reducing the amount of commands necessary for everyday use.

At the moment, some other exoskeletons for the upper body exist (one of these was used as the picture for this project). However, most of these exoskeletons focus on strength rather than mobility. Some focus on increasing strength to superhuman levels without regard for mobility, while others simply transfer weight to decrease fatigue. Other simpler exoskeleton designs did not focus on strength, but had very limited ranges of motion. No upper body exoskeletons focus on mobility without assistance from the user. Rewiring of nerves, which involves moving functional nerves to control different muscles, shows promise and has been used to restore limited function to arms. However, this cannot restore full mobility and requires expensive, complex, and often extremely painful surgery.

My exoskeleton will meet this currently unmet need by focusing on mobility without assistance from the arms. Using inexpensive and unobtrusive materials that provide mobility and comfort, my device will provide an alternative to surgery. It will be controlled using a medium that requires little to no movement, such as voice commands. Ideally, this will allow my project to help as many people as possible.

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